Barclays, RBS, HSBC, Credit Suisse fined 344 mln euros for forex cartel
BRUSSELS, Dec 2 (Reuters) – European Union antitrust regulators fined Barclays (BARC.L), Credit Suisse (CSGN.S), HSBC (HSBA.L) and RBS (NWG.L) a total of 344 million euros ($390 million) on Thursday for rigging the foreign exchange spot trading market.
UBS (UBSG.S) avoided a 94 million euro fine as it had alerted the European Commission about the cartel. The EU competition regulator said the cartel had focused on forex spot trading of G10 currencies.
HSBC’s fine was the largest at 174.3 million euros, followed by Credit Suisse at 83.3 million euros, Barclays at 54.3 million and RBS at 32.5 million.
Barclays, HSBC and RBS admitted wrongdoing in return for a cut in the penalty. RBS is now known as NatWest following a rebranding last year.
The fines are the latest to hit banks, which have received billions of euros in penalties worldwide over more than a decade for the rigging of benchmarks used in many day-to-day financial transactions.
“Today we complete our sixth cartel investigation in the financial sector since 2013 and conclude the third leg of our investigation into the foreign exchange spot trading market,” EU antitrust chief Margrethe Vestager said in a statement.
($1 = 0.8828 euros)