Fri Aug 29 20:13:54 SAST 2014

Hong Kong probes UBS over interbank rate rigging

By Sapa-AFP | Dec 20, 2012 | COMMENTS [ 0 ]

Hong Kong’s de facto central bank said it would probe Swiss banking giant UBS over claims of possible rigging of Hong Kong’s interbank offered rate (Hibor).

The Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) said it has received information from overseas regulators about “possible misconduct” by UBS involving submissions for Hibor and other reference rates in Asia.

“The HKMA has commenced an investigation with a view to ascertaining any misconduct committed by the bank in relation to Hibor submissions,” the Hong Kong Monetary Authority said in a statement.

The HKMA said it will work with overseas regulatory authorities to gather information and “consider further actions that need to be taken” pending the findings of the investigation.

In an emailed statement to AFP, a Hong Kong-based spokesman for UBS said: “We continue to work closely with various regulatory authorities to resolve issues relating to the setting of certain global benchmark interest rates.”  “As we are currently in active discussions with these authorities, we cannot comment further.”  The move comes a day after UBS agreed on Wednesday to pay $1.5 billion in fines to national regulators in three countries to settle accusations that it tried to manipulate interest rates.

The probes by Swiss, British and US regulators revealed evidence of massive misconduct in the setting of the London interbank offered rate (Libor), a global reference that affects products from student loans to mortgages.

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