5 Banks To Plead Guilty To Criminal Rigging Charges, Pay $5.6 Billion For Manipulating Markets

Tyler Durden's picture

As the live webcast from US AG Loretta Lynch indicates, moments ago the DOJ announced five global banks including Citi, J.P. Morgan, Barclays, RBS would plead guilty to criminal charges to conspiring to manipulate FX Prices, and would pay some $5.6 billion in combined penalties to resolve a long running U.S. investigation into whether traders at the banks colluded to move foreign currency rates in directions to benefit their own positions.

More from the WSJ:

Four of the banks, J.P. Morgan Chase & Co., Barclays PLC, Royal Bank of Scotland Group PLC, and Citigroup Inc., will plead guilty to conspiring to manipulate the price of U.S. dollars and euros, authorities said.


The fifth bank, UBS AG , received immunity in the antitrust case, but will plead guilty to manipulating the Libor benchmark after prosecutors said the bank violated an earlier accord meant to resolve those allegations of misconduct. UBS will also pay an additional Libor-related fine.


Bank of America Corp. will also pay a $205 million penalty to the Fed to resolve the regulator’s foreign exchange probe. Bank of America didn’t face similar action from the Justice Department.


Authorities said euro dollar traders at the banks, who were self-described members of “The Cartel” communicated through coded language in an online chat room to coordinate attempts to move rates set at 1:15 and 4 p.m.

Turns out ratting our criminal peers out does pay after all:

One UBS trader also engaged in the same collusive behavior in the euro and dollar market, but the bank wasn’t charged over that conduct because it had obtained immunity by being the first bank to report the possible antitrust violations.

Live DOJ webcast below.

Broadcast live streaming video on Ustream

And  yet:

No traders have yet been criminally charged over the conduct, but New York’s financial regulator said it required Barclays to fire eight employees in connection with the resolution. Investigations into individuals are continuing, according to government officials.

Don't be surprised if despite the guilty criminal pleas, nobody goes to prison yet again.

In any event, we now know that aside from Libor, FX, gold, stocks and treasuries, nothing else is manipulated.

Our final question: did the DOJ accidentally forget to charge the Bank of England and its former employee Martin Mallett who was fired for FX rigging?  Recall:

Martin Mallett was dismissed by the Bank of England yesterday for “serious misconduct relating to failure to adhere to the Bank’s internal policies,” according to a statement by the central bank today.


Mallett, who worked at the bank for almost 30 years, had concerns from as early as November 2012 that conversations between traders right before benchmarks were set could lead to the rigging of those rates, according a report today by Anthony Grabiner, who was commissioned by the central bank to look into what its officials knew about practices under investigation around the world. Mallett was “uncomfortable” with the traders’ practices, yet he didn’t escalate these concerns, Grabiner said.


“We’re disappointed because we hold ourselves to the highest standards -- we have an outstanding markets division,” BOE Governor Mark Carney said at a briefing in London today. “What Lord Grabiner found was that our chief dealer was aware of circumstances in the market that could facilitate or lead to improper behavior by market participants.”

Eagerly awaiting for the answer.

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timeless21's picture

Those 5B seems more like a commision 

The Merovingian's picture

And not a single executive going to prison ... unbelievable.

ZippyBananaPants's picture

Am I wrong?


I thought Fred Flintstone only wore orange?

Pinto Currency's picture



Central banks have printed $25 trillion since 2009 and 20 million jobs lost in the US alone.

Wait till the famine hits.

Keyser's picture

Too big to jail has turned into windfall profits for the gubbamint... I would still like to see the CEO's of these banks roasted on a spit... 

The Juggernaut's picture

Let’s take this logic a step further. Banks fix a benchmark, make money off it and call themselves a cartel then get into trouble (which they should; unfair competition). When is it the Federal Reserve's time to be brought to justice! Replace all the names of these banks with The Fed and the American People will have ultimate Liberty!

max2205's picture

Who gets that money?


I should get about 20k. 

Silky Johnson's picture

Fines will only work if they are paid in blood. Monopoly money that Mr. Yellen prints at will dont mean shit.

MonetaryApostate's picture

<- Posturing, Hand Slapping, bonuses, bribes, and the collusion goes on....

<- Pretext to Bankocalypse...

The Limerick King's picture



Our banks have admitted to crimes

And sentenced to pay a few dimes

While profits they see

Front-running QE

We're living in interesting times

Bay of Pigs's picture

"We'll make them an offer they can't refuse"

Jamie "Legs" Dimon

Anasteus's picture

Not only the banks remain unpunished they'll continue to be the leading banks in the same markets flooding the world with 'influential financial advices' and 'analyses' even further. Compared to it all the Greek problems are just a negligible episode.

US democracy and justice unleashed.

Infinite QE's picture

The owners of the Fed via the IRS.

mt paul's picture

wonder if all these fines

are considered GDP growth...

KnuckleDragger-X's picture

As long as they have a profit after fine, they are quite happy. If DOJ and the courts were serious about punishing them they should cut them off from all market trades for a couple of years......

Oldwood's picture

These fines, when not accompanied by personal punishment, are simply a tax, and like all taxes are just another cost of doing business that will be passed on to their customers, or in the case of no customers, back to the taxpayer. No crime syndicate could come up with as good a scam.

TeethVillage88s's picture

They never thought they would get away with it forever... but "No One Ever Says Anything to Them".

It is a game. They just keep playing the game.

They game is to Complain, Protest any real Regulation or increase in Capital Controls, look 'em in the Eyes and say you don't understand how this works it is very complicated, "We are doing God's work, just as surely as if we were Soldiers".

A Game. A Lawyers Lair Game. Bankers & Lawyers = Incestuous Offspring.

Okienomics's picture

Come on guys, this is victimless crime.  Bankers, drug dealers and prostitutes.  Just add their activity to the GDP and move along.

Oldwood's picture

As with illegal immigrants they only wanted a better life, so what are a few laws and the destruction of innocent bystanders? Their are no markets, there is no capitalism. There is only theft, by force or by fraud. We had better wise up or we will be what's being served for supper.

This is it's picture

And where does the $5B go to?


Keyser's picture

Out one pocket and into the other, kind of like 3 card monty... 


eclectic syncretist's picture

The 5B is a down payment to the corrupt gov cronies that will set up the next set of bankster crimes.

TeethVillage88s's picture

Pompous asses take down the system and what happens?

- They get bigger & Stronger
- They get legal 'breaks' at every turn to allow them to systematically ignore rules and regulations
- they get $700 Billion Bailout, they toxic paper gets socialized by the FED, they get Credit Stimulus in LIRP to put 'em back on Steroids

- We lose out on Fixed income, Safe Investments, Systemic Credit Bubble continues for 6 more years at least after a Decade of loose credit and regulations, and longest running credit bubble from 2002-2015

- We get higher bank fees, higher home insurance, higher property taxes, tighter municipal & university budgets, we get inflation, our corporations get higher administrative costs which are passed on to consumers, investors lose dividends as admin costs go up

- We get Systemic Overseas Wars

- We get Systemic Growth of Federal Budget as it is looted

- We get open borders as a fix to demographic problems

ZH Snob's picture

aren't DOJ fines tax-deductable?

scattergun's picture

Actually, no they are not.

rubiconsolutions's picture

The beauty of fractional reserve banking...the banks will simply loan out a bit more money and the fiat created will more than cover the fines.

thetruthhurts's picture

$5.6 billion to steal $560 billion = good deal.

I want in on that deal!

Trogdor's picture

Well, honestly, the Gubmint doesn't WANT to see those crimes END - I mean, they get to pocket $5.6 billion in fun money.  It's not like the theives in the District of Criminals are going to give the money back to the poor schlubs that the parasite banksters stole it from in the first place. 

I think they look at the "fines" as more of "their cut"....  They get their payoff and get to look like their doing something at the same time - it's win-win for the regulatory douchebags AND the banksters.

sgt_doom's picture

You know, like many others, I am sick of hearing the DOJ crooked jackholes notify the public that these banksters conspired to commit financial fraud and those bankster conspired to commit financial fraud, and oh yes, these four phony cancer charities bilked the highly gullible public of $187 million, and nobody has ever gone to jail for all this financial fraud.

Lynch is the chief crooked spokesperson replacing the previous chief crooked spokesperson who replaced the previous . . . .

Time to do a final audit of the chief "white shoe firm" the DOJ, then shut it down!


Kurpak's picture

Arrest warrants issued for James Dimon, Antony Jenkins, Ross McEwan, and Michael Corbat.

Sick of this shit

StychoKiller's picture

The decimal place on that fine has to move at least one place to the right, else this is just a sad joke!

XRAYD's picture

How much money did they make with the market manipulation? And what has it cost third parties?


Without these number, billions in fines is meaningless! Just more "inside" dealing masquerading as justice.

AE911Truth's picture

Third party injuries (to most everyone on the planet) far exceed the net worth of these corporations.

Dissolve these criminal institutions and use only honest money, or there will be no recovery.



Oldwood's picture

How much of our current measure of GDP is actually theft? Given that the government does not bother to distinguish any difference, should be all the lesson we need. As with any corrupt organized crime syndicate, it should be apparent that there is only one path to wealth and that is through the purchase of influence. For the corrupt assholes to leave you be without a demand for tithing only means you are already in their service or are just too damned small to bother with.

Get rich...buy a congressman!

Pure Evil's picture

Actually, that's the skim off the top you have to pay Pauli.

TeethVillage88s's picture

Das ein Deutche 'Junker'. "Royal or Noble Blood Line".

PacOps's picture

Bonus time at the DOJ & Fed will be substantial this quarter.


Hi 5's all around and no one is "punished" or resume tainted 'cause the "Bank" did it.

Utter bullshit.

LawsofPhysics's picture

Will anyone, who was in charge of these banks actually go bankrupt and to PRISON?

If there are no real consequences, nothing will change.

get long sharecropping and guillotine manufacturers, beat the rush!!!

nickels's picture

Justice Roberts says that corporations ARE people. Send the corporations to jail!

LawsofPhysics's picture

likewise, as a "limited liability person" I cannot be held accountable for anything!

"full faith and credit"

TeethVillage88s's picture

Das Limited Liability Corporation sind als "Royalty" und mit "sovereign immunity"

Das Richtig. Correct.

unplugged's picture

no - simply because as usual, the banksters own the rulemakers & rule book - and like you say, it will take yet another war (ie, revolution, insert your favorite fight word, etc) to get rid of these pests

farflungstar's picture

Nope no jail time - greed is good, remember?

HamRove's picture

Theft is legal.....if your better than everyone else.

TeethVillage88s's picture

Think of the message to young bankers and those bankers already 'at risk'.

Without real and substantial consequences for 'Royalty' and their politicians & Bankers... this behavior will, spread, and grow in the future generations of our 'young leaders'.

Like your leadership today, well it is festering, rotting, and spoiling the other fruit in the universities and in finance.