Member access

4-Traders Homepage  >  Shares  >  London Stock Exchange  >  Royal Bank of Scotland Group plc    RBS   GB00B7T77214

Delayed Quote. Delayed London Stock Exchange - 05/26 11:21:23 am
345.2 GBp   -2.79%
08:57a Lehman collapse shapes Bank of England's trading test for lenders
08:27a Banking and energy shares drag down FTSE index
08:03a UK corporation tax take from banks slumps despite profit rebound ..
SummaryQuotesChartsNewsAnalysisCalendarCompanyFinancialsConsensusRevisions 
News SummaryMost relevantAll newsSector news 

Royal Bank of Scotland Group plc : EU offers banks chance to cut fines in rate-fixing probe: sources

02/22/2013 | 07:26am US/Eastern

The European Commission wants to conclude its investigation into the fixing of lending benchmarks Euribor and Libor this year and has offered several banks under suspicion the possibility of a settlement to reduce hefty fines, sources said.

If the banks were to agree to such a settlement, it would allow the EU's antitrust chief Joaquin Almunia to wrap up his investigation as soon as this year and before his term as antitrust commissioner draws to a close in late 2014.

"Almunia wants decisions on the cases by the end of the year," said one of the sources familiar with the investigation.

The offer comes almost 18 months after the Commission raided a number of banks suspected of Euribor rate rigging. It later widened its investigation to other benchmarks.

The move signals that there is a prospect of reduced fines from Brussels in return for ending any activities that could lead price-fixing of Euribor, the euro interbank-offered rate, and its larger counterpart the London Interbank Offered Rate (Libor).

Many banks are reluctant, however, to settle with the Commission because they believe the charges are unfounded, they said.

If they resist and the Commission later finds them guilty of manipulation, they would face a fine equivalent to 10 percent of their annual revenue. That could rise to three times as much if individual banks are prosecuted for rigging three benchmarks. By settling, the fines would be reduced.

A spokesman for Almunia declined to comment on the prospect of any settlement.

Heavy penalties already loom in other regions. The United States and Britain will by mid-year levy more fines against those alleged to have been involved in interest rate rigging, sources close to the probe said.

U.S. and UK regulators have fined three banks to date - RBS, Britain's Barclays and Switzerland's UBS - a total of $2.6 billion for allowing traders to game Libor interbank rates in a global scam.

Earlier on Friday, Almunia said he had widened his investigation of suspected unfair fixing of lending benchmarks such as Euribor and Libor to interest rate products for the Swiss franc.

Euribor and Libor are the key gauges of how much banks pay to borrow from each other, and are used as reference points for swathes of financial products from Spanish mortgages to derivatives contracts sealed in London.

Both are set using interbank borrowing rates submitted by banks.

(Writing by John O'Donnell; Editing by Will Waterman)

By Foo Yun Chee

React to this article
Latest news on ROYAL BANK OF SCOTLAND GRO
08:57a Lehman collapse shapes Bank of England's trading test for lenders
08:41a CITIGROUP : City Trader Was 'Ringmaster' In Libor Scandal
08:27a Banking and energy shares drag down FTSE index
08:03a UK corporation tax take from banks slumps despite profit rebound - study
08:02a GENERAL MOTORS : Fed may shove GM guilty plea declared by Law expert
07:31a UK might tighten bank capital rules as economy peaks - BoE's Taylor
04:50a ROYAL BANK OF SCOTLAND : Economics Weekly - Euphoria
05/23 ROYAL BANK OF SCOTLAND : Drink: Bruce Anderson
05/22 Ireland threatens to penalise banks unless mortgage rates cut
05/22 ROYAL BANK OF SCOTLAND : The importance of choice
Advertisement
Chart
Duration : Period :
Royal Bank of Scotland Gro Technical Analysis Chart | RBS | GB00B7T77214 | 4-Traders
Income Statement Evolution
More Financials