• Switzerland's news in English
 

UBS and Credit Suisse in cartel probe

Published: 03 Feb 2012 11:07 GMT+01:00
Updated: 03 Feb 2012 10:47 GMT+01:00

Swiss authorities said on Friday they have opened an investigation into suspected manipulation of interbank lending rates, following similar actions in other countries.

The Swiss Competition Commission COMCO said in a statement that it had received information regarding potential unlawful agreements among banks.

"Specifically, collusion between derivative traders might have influenced the LIBOR (London Interbank Offered Rate) and TIBOR (Tokyo Interbank Offered Rate) reference rates.

"Derivative traders working for a number of financial institutions might have manipulated these submissions by coordinating their behaviour, thereby influencing these reference rates in their favour," the statement said.

The commission said derivative traders might have colluded to manipulate the difference between "the ask price and the bid price (spread) of derivatives based on these reference rates to the detriment of their clients."

COMCO has begun to probe actions by Switzerland's two biggest banks, UBS and Credit Suisse, as well as those of a dozen major foreign financial institutions and other companies.

A UBS spokeswoman contacted by AFP said the bank would "take very seriously" the investigation and will "cooperate fully" with authorities.

Foreign banks being investigated include the Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi, Citigroup, Deutsche Bank, HSBC, JP Morgan Chase, Mizuho Financial Group, Rabobank, Royal Bank of Scotland, Societe Generale and Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation.

Tibor and Libor rates are based on central bank reference rates and determine the level of interest paid by participating financial institutions on interbank markets in London or Tokyo.

The rates are then used as benchmarks in many contracts and financial products such as home mortgages.

In December, Japan's financial watchdog ordered a temporary suspension of trading activities at Japanese subsidiaries of the US bank Citigroup and UBS, accusing them of trying to manipulate interbank rates.

The Financial Times reported in March that US, Britain and Japanese officials had launched a probe that applied to all banks regarding the calculation of Libor for dollar interbank loans between 2006 and 2008.

Lyssandra Sears (news@thelocal.ch)

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
Refugees get 'priority over foreigners' for jobs
Photo: Seco

Refugees get 'priority over foreigners' for jobs

The federal government is backing moves by the cantons, municipalities and employers’ groups to give priority to hiring refugees living in Switzerland over workers from outside the country. READ  

Horseplay triggers A1 motorway vehicle crash
Photo: Saint Gallen cantonal police

Horseplay triggers A1 motorway vehicle crash

Too much horsepower — literally — was blamed for causing a costly motor vehicle accident on the A1 motorway in the canton of Saint Gallen. READ  

Vatican foiled over bid to hide Swiss bank data
Photo: Jean-Pol Grandmont

Vatican foiled over bid to hide Swiss bank data

A top Swiss court on Monday rejected an appeal by the Vatican's bank to keep secret information from one of its Swiss bank accounts suspected of being used for fraud. READ  

Anglo expats mine creativity to earn crust
Gareth Knott: "Thankfully design is a universal language." Photo: Handout

Anglo expats mine creativity to earn crust

Switzerland’s job market is appealingly lucrative but sometimes anglophones need to be creative to find a job in a country where English is not an official language, as The Local's Emily Mawson finds out. READ  

Libya talks struggle to cement unity deal

A new round of peace talks between Libya's warring factions resumed in Geneva on Monday as the country continued to struggle with divisions. READ  

Presented by CurrencyFair
Avoid the costs of wild Swiss currency swings
Is any currency reliable forever? Photo: Shutterstock

Avoid the costs of wild Swiss currency swings

Want to avoid getting stung by currency fluctuations like those unleashed when the Swiss National Bank scrapped the Swiss franc’s peg to the euro? Join other expats in Switzerland who averted bank fees and market turmoil by sending money internationally with CurrencyFair. READ  

More work for same pay: firms tackle high franc
Photo: Stadler Rail

More work for same pay: firms tackle high franc

Responding to the surge in the value of the Swiss franc, certain companies in Switzerland are asking their employees to work longer hours without any extra pay. READ  

Tennis: Australian Open
Wawrinka wins tiebreak thriller to make quarters
Photo: STRDL/AFP

Wawrinka wins tiebreak thriller to make quarters

Defending champion Stan Wawrinka won a thrilling fourth set tiebreaker on Monday to down Spain's Guillermo Garcia-Lopez and book a place in the Australian Open quarterfinals. READ  

Average new Swiss cars have bigger engines
With an average horsepower of 342, Porsche had the most powerful engines among cars bought by Swiss motorists last year. Photo: UggBoy

Average new Swiss cars have bigger engines

Driving cars with bigger engines may be politically incorrect in some quarters but that isn’t stopping many Swiss motorists. READ  

World Economic Forum: Davos
Davos forum runs without security hitches
Snowmen at Davos. Photo: action/2015

Davos forum runs without security hitches

The 45th annual World Economic Forum gathering in Davos, which wound up at the weekend, ran smoothly without any security issues, Graubünden cantonal authorities said. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
National
Number of 'immigrants' swells to third of Swiss population: report
International
Pricey Switzerland tops latest global cost of living study
National
Swiss travel agents and retailers cut prices after franc surge
Technology
Solar Impulse team unveils round-the-world route for sun-powered plane
Business & Money
Swiss central bank's shock move to let franc rise sparks debate
National
Markets panic as Swiss National Bank scraps euro rate cap
National
VIDEO: Swiss soldiers publish pictures of antics on internet
National
A portrait of modern Switzerland in ten stats
National
Europe in statistics - from Spain to Sweden
Features
Geneva-based expat pens seismic novel about Haitian homeland
Features
Tons of explosives finally removed from hundreds of Swiss sites
International
'Don't succumb to fear': Swiss President Sommaruga on terrorism
Sport
Federer claims historic 1,000th win at Brisbane tennis tournament
National
Swiss newspapers condemn deadly Charlie Hebdo terror attack
Business & Money
Hackers steal client information from Geneva cantonal bank
National
Charlie Hebdo terror attack in Paris sparks Swiss rallies
National
Pop star Madonna leaves her mark during Swiss mountain holiday
National
Disassembled Solar Impulse heads to Emirates in jumbo jet
National
US ambassador in Bern sparks flap over Swiss ski lift line 'chaos'
National
New President Sommaruga lauds 'bold' Swiss democracy
National
Hopes fade of finding missing Scottish researcher still alive
National
Scientists in Lausanne and Belgium step up search for alien life
National
Nude 'selfie' mayor heads Switzerland's top ten scandal list
Features
The Local's top ten snow sport alternatives to skiing in Switzerland
Culture
Suspected stabber Nabilla given conditional release from detention
International
Swiss hotel school grad 'hero' among Australian café siege victims
Business & Money
Switzerland cracks top ten list of best countries for business
Business & Money
Swiss National Bank imposes negative interest rates
Politics
Federal cabinet ministers rapped for accepting new limouisines
International
Swiss chocolate café at centre of hostage-taking drama Down Under
National
Why has The Local got a new logo?
Features
Exploring the 'most beautiful village' in French-speaking Switzerland
Business & Money
Italian thieves steal 260 tons of Swiss Lindt & Sprüngli chocolate
National
World's longest train tunnel — under the Swiss Alps — set to open in 2016
National
Porn film on video screen spices up fare at Swiss McDonald's restaurant
National
Masturbation scene in Swiss TV ad for Media Markt draws complaints
National
Cantonal lawmakers end 'happy hours' tippling in Vaud pubs and bars
Politics
Former concert pianist Sommaruga elected as next Swiss president
Culture
Jailed German art forger's paintings go on sale at Bern gallery
Business & Money
Ikea founder Ingvar Kamprad's family listed as Switzerland's richest
Features
Long-time expats face dilemma: to be or not to be a Swiss citizen
National
Switzerland's voters massively reject strict immigration limits
Business & Money
Pieces of Napoleon's auctioned hair to be put in Geneva luxury watches
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

Latest news from The Local in Sweden

More news from Sweden at thelocal.se

2,160
jobs available