Search Results for: libor

Next banking fiasco? Manipulating foreign exchange rates?

The Wall Street Journal reports ”Flipped” Bankers Aid U.S. in Foreign-Exchange Probe – Criminal Charges Are Expected as Early as Next Month.

Looks like it is time to pay attention to a new fiasco. After manipulating LIBOR comes the foreign exchange rates, or forex.

Article appears to be based on lots of leaks. In a tossup between guessing whether the Justice Department or the banks are leaking most of the info, I’ll guess the slightly higher probability is the feds.

This new fiasco is apparently developed from information obtained during the LIBOR investigations.

Individual enforcement action this time

Total BNP Paribas fine is $8.97 billion for money laundering

I previously mentioned the total penalty BNP Paribas agreed to pay for laundering money to evade U.S. trade sanctions was $8,833.6M. The updated WSJ article said the total settlement is $8.97B. After realizing the disconnect, I went back to the federal plea deal. I missed that amount until this morning.

The forfeiture is $8,833.6M, which represents the amount the feds say on page 1 of the plea deal is …

Guilty plea to 3 criminal counts, $8.8B fine, and 1 year ban on dollar settlements for BNP Paribas’ laundering of $190B

BNP Paribas has settled up for their systemic efforts to use the U.S. banking system to launder money for Iran, Sudan, and Cuba.

Criminal pleas

Here are the plea agreements:

  • federal level, 1 guilty plea – 1 count of violating the International Emergency Economic Powers Act
  • state level, 2 guilty pleas – 1 count Falsifying Business Records in First Degree and 1 count Conspiracy in the Fifth Degree.


The dollar amount of laundered money is 6 times larger than any previous press reports suggest. All earlier comments said about $30B was involved.

Minor updates on banks meeting justice

In the justice grinds slow department….

There has been much speculation of a settlement in the works for Credit Suisse for their efforts to help Americans avoid tax by secretly stashing funds in Swiss accounts. Reports are firming up that the bank will write checks of $2.5 billion to settle up. Will also take one guilty plea on a criminal charge.

The Wall Street is reporting Credit Suisse to Pay $2.5 Billion in Pact.

Scratching my head over that $13 billion settlement

I’m confused by the reports that JP Morgan is close to settling most of the claims against the bank by the federal government in return for a payment of $13,000,000,000.

On one hand…

There are several parts of the long list of Morgan scandals that fully justify punishment, in my opinion. Consider manipulating Libor or prices in the energy market as just two examples.

Since the options of either public flogging or liberal application of feathers preceded by tar are not possible with a corporation, a decent fine would be a good start.

Another TBTF bank accused of manipulating electricity prices – time to start paying attention to another fiasco

Three days ago I mentioned Barclays was accused of manipulating energy prices and the feds, specifically the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, claim a $487.9M fine is due from them.  The case is heading to court – Barclays to Dispute Electricity-Manipulation Charges.

The Wall Street Journal reports J.P. Morgan is now negotiating a settlement for allegedly playing games with electricity prices.

Time to start paying attention to another banking fiasco.

The article Big Bank Staring at Record Fine Over Energy says the bank began negotiations with FERC with a possible billion dollar fine on the table.

Does too big to fail, too big to punish, and too big to manage mean you are too big?

George F. Will suggests the answer to the question is “yes”: When banks get too big to fail, they are too dangerous to leave intact

One of the U.S. senators on the left end of the political spectrum thinks it is time to break up the too-big-to-fail banks.

Look at the concentration of assets in the TBTF range and the long history of TBTF: …

On the other hand, you cannot say banks are underregulated

Cooking Libor. Money laundering. What are the big banks doing?

Where are the regulators?

I’ve been scratching my head about some of the things banks have been doing lately, such as manipulating Libor. Other people have long been blaming banks and other financiers as the primary cause of the 2008 financial crisis. I am definitely not in that camp, but that’s a topic for another day and a dozen posts. HSBC is setting a $1.5 billion reserve for possible fines related to money laundering, since they apparently allowed $7 billion to move from Mexico to the US in violation of US law.

In the midst of that head scratching, many people are wondering, where were the regulators? In the Libor issue at least, they were well aware of what was going on.

See that swirl on the weather map? Looks like a cat 5 hurricane headed for landfall on the big banks

In Blood in the water’, The Economist describes the swelling number of lawsuits against the big banks who are accused of manipulating LIBOR.

From the article:

So far, at least 28 serious lawsuits have been filed. The most recent, for fraud, came from Berkshire Bank, a small lender, on July 25th. It echoes a case filed in May by Wisconsin’s Community Bank & Trust under Wisconsin racketeering statutes against Citigroup, Bank of America, and JPMorgan Chase (the American banks on the LIBOR panel).

That would be 28 suits since the issue exploded about a month ago.