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Competition court says global banks can be fined in South Africa over rate rigging
By Emma Rumney
Friday, February 28, 2020
JOHANNESBURG -- South Africa's Competition Appeal Court has overturned a decision that a host of international banks cannot be fined if found guilty for alleged exchange rate rigging, the country's Competition Commission said today.
The watchdog has been investigating the case since 2015, but when it tried to bring charges against the banks last year South Africa's Competition Tribunal said that banks without a presence in South Africa could not be fined, though they could be declared anti-competitive if the commission could prove their case.
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The banks, including Bank of America Merrill Lynch, JP Morgan, and Credit Suisse and the commission appealed that decision, with the banks arguing that there was no jurisdiction for even a declaratory order to be handed down.
But the appeals court dismissed the banks' application with costs and upheld the commission's appeal, ruling that the banks could in fact be fined, the commission said as it welcomed the decision. ...
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