U.K. hastens negotiations for currency-rigging settlement

Section:

By Lindsay Fortado, Suzi Ring, and Gavin Finch
Bloomberg News
Wednesday, July 23, 2014

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2014-07-23/u-k-fca-said-to-near-fx-rigging...

LONDON -- Talks to reach the first settlement in the currency-rigging probe are accelerating, with Britain's markets regulator preparing to reach a deal with a group of banks this year, people with knowledge of the talks said.

The Financial Conduct Authority is in talks with banks including Barclays Plc, Citigroup Inc., JPMorgan Chase & Co., and UBS AG, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the discussions are private. Royal Bank of Scotland Group Plc and HSBC Holdings Plc may also be part of the group settlement, one of the people said.

... Dispatch continues below ...



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The FCA is trying to fast-track the process and may levy any fines in the coming months, three of the people said. The watchdog is seeking to keep the scope of the deal narrow to speed up the settlement, two of the people said.

The talks are still continuing and an agreement may stretch into next year, the people added.

Representatives of the banks and FCA in London declined to comment on the talks.

Regulators and prosecutors are scrutinizing allegations that dealers at the world’s biggest banks traded ahead of their clients and colluded to rig the WM/Reuters rate, a benchmark that pension funds and money managers use to determine what they pay for foreign currencies.

More than 25 traders have been fired, suspended, or put on leave after the allegations emerged last year.

U.K. prosecutors at the Serious Fraud Office opened a criminal investigation into alleged fraudulent conduct in currency markets this week.

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