LONDON/NEW YORK (TIP): US and British regulators fined Deutsche Bank$2.5 billion and its British subsidiary pleaded guilty to criminal wire fraud on Thursday as it became the eighth financial group to settle allegations of rigging interest rate benchmarks.
The record penalty in a seven-year investigation that has shredded the banking industry’s reputation takes the total fines imposed on some of the world’s top financial institutions to more than $8.5 billion. Twenty-one traders and brokers face criminal charges.
US regulators fined Germany’s largest bank $2.175 billion and British watchdogs imposed a 227 million pound ($341 million) penalty for its role in a scam to manipulate the London Interbank Offered Rate (Libor) and its Euribor cousin – together benchmarks for hundreds of trillions of dollars of financial products and loans worldwide.
Britain’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) said the misconduct involved at least 29 Deutsche Bank individuals including managers, traders and submitters based mainly in London but also in Frankfurt, Tokyo and New York.
It accused Deutsche Bank of inadequate systems and controls, failing to provide timely, accurate information and misleading the UK watchdog by claiming its German regulator BaFin had prevented it from sharing a report, when this was untrue.The New York State Department of Financial Services regulator said the German lender would from now dismiss and ban employees who engaged in misconduct and install an independent monitor.
“This case stands out for the seriousness and duration of the breaches by Deutsche Bank – something reflected in the size of today’s fine,” said Georgina Philippou, acting director of enforcement and market oversight at the British regulator. “One division at Deutsche Bank had a culture of generating profits without proper regard to the integrity of the market. This wasn’t limited to a few individuals but, on certain desks, it appeared deeply ingrained.”