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How much did LIBOR-rigging cost? U.S. bank regulator finally has an answer

Section: Daily Dispatches

By Jonathan Browning
Bloomberg News
Thursday, March 18, 2021

Just as the much-maligned Libor benchmark is on its way out, a U.S. regulator is finally trying to work out the potential losses from the manipulation scandals a decade ago.

The U.S. Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, which is suing Barclays Plc and six other European lenders in London, says that a group of failed U.S. institutions suffered a collective loss of around $7 million for every rigged basis point. 

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It's the first time the regulator has put a number on the size of the claim, which has the potential to run into hundreds of millions of dollars.

"This is as close as we've got to knowing, if I can put it like that, why we are all here," Charles Bear, a lawyer for the British Bankers' Association, which oversaw Libor and is also a defendant in the case, said at a court hearing Wednesday.

The London interbank offered rate is entering its "final chapter," British officials said this month as they set out a roadmap to retire the benchmark rate that's been at the heart of the international financial system for decades. Libor was irreparably tainted by the manipulation allegations that led to more than $9 billion in fines for major financial institutions. ...

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