Five Banks Fined by European Commission
As of Thursday, March 16th 2019, there have been Europe Fines 5 Banks that in total have been fined with over a billion Euros. These fines came as a result of manipulating foreign exchange markets between one another. The penalty was enacted by the European Commission, a regulatory body within the European Union that is responsible for governing over banks. The banks that were fined include Barclays, Citigroup, RBS, JP Morgan and MUFG.
In the same announcement released by the European Commission, these banks manipulated eleven currencies, including the British Pound and the US Dollar. The fines were split in the following order. An 811 Million Euro fine was given to Barclays, Citigroup, JP Morgan and RBS. These banks combined were known as the “Banana Split” Cartel.
The additional fine was released to the “Essex Express” Cartel which comprised on MUFG Bank, RBG and Barclays. In total, they receive a 258 Million Euro fine. These odd names were created in the chat rooms run by the cartels, in which various traders made inside dealers. The Essex Express cartel was named for the city due to all traders living east of London in Essex.
There were additional chat rooms that were used by traders, including the “Two and a Half Men”, “Semi Grumpy Old Men” and “Only Marge” chat rooms. These chat rooms were also used to speak about outstanding customer orders, risk positions, bid-asking spreads and trading activity.
Europe Fines 5 Banks
The European Commission Commissioner, Margrethe Vestager, commented on the fines by saying: “Foreign exchange spot trading activities are one of the largest markets in the world, worth billions of Euros every day. Today Europe Fines 5 Banks we have fined Barclays, The Royal Bank of Scotland, Citigroup, JPMorgan and MUFG Bank and these cartel decisions send a clear message that the Commission will not tolerate collusive behaviour in any sector of the financial markets. The behaviour of these banks undermined the integrity of the sector at the expense of the European economy and consumers.”