Thursday 6 June 2019 8:20 am

Barclays and RBS fined in forex rigging scandal

Five banks including Barclays and Royal Bank of Scotland have been hit with a SFr 90m (£71.39m) fine for fixing the foreign exchange market.

Traders at Barclays, Citigroup, JP Morgan, RBS and UBS took part in a “three way banana split” cartel between 2007 and 2013 to manipulate the forex market, the Swiss competition regulator Weko said.

Read more: Five banks fined for forex rigging

Another cartel, dubbed “Essex express”, included traders from Barclays, RBS, UBS and Japan’s MUFG Bank.


The traders used internet chatrooms to plot the scam, the regulator said.

Barclays was fined SFr 27m, Citigroup  SFr 28.5m, JP Morgan SFr 9.5m, MUFG Bank SFr 1.5m and RBS SFr 22.5m.

UBS was not fined as it alerted the watchdog to the cartel’s actions first.

Credit Suisse is still under investigation. The regulator said it has closed its investigation into Bank Julius Bar & Co and Zurcher Kantonalbank.

Read more: Forex trading director spent client money on luxury lifestyle

Last month the European Union fined the banks €1.07bn for their roles in the scam.

The EU Commission’s investigation revealed some individual traders in charge of forex spot trading exchanged sensitive information and trading plans.


Competition commissioner Margrethe Vestager said: “The behaviour of these banks undermined the integrity of the sector at the expense of the European economy and consumers”.

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