LIBOR

In Latest Market Rigging Settlement, Citi Fined $425MM For Manipulating Interest Rates

Another day, another too-big-to-fail bank gets slapped on the wrist after being busted for blatant rigging of the market. The CFTC Order finds that from Jan 2007 to Jan 2012, Citibank on multiple occasions attempted to manipulate, and made false reports concerning, the U.S. Dollar International Swaps and Derivatives Association Fix (USD ISDAFIX), a global benchmark for interest rate products. Notably, while a handful of European banks have already settled criminal or civil claims tied to Libor rigging, Citi is the first U.S. bank to do so. Citi will pay a combined $425 million to resolve this manipulation, and as they proudly note in the press release, with today's actions, CFTC has imposed over $5.08 billion in penalties in 17 actions against banks and brokers to address rigging and manipulation in ISDAFIX, FX, and LIBOR benchmarks.

Frontrunning: May 24

  • Asian stocks near 11-week lows, dollar bounces on Fed rate view (Reuters)
  • Poll Finds Lack of Enthusiasm for Clinton and Trump (WSJ)
  • Oil falls for fifth day as focus returns to growing exports (Reuters)
  • The Hedge Fund That Couldn't Stay Open Long Enough for a Big Payday (BBG)
  • French police break up refinery blockade in anti-reform showdown (Reuters)

Frontrunning: May 12

  • Trump’s Early Backers on Capitol Hill See Their Profile Raised (WSJ)
  • Oil prices rise toward six-month high, tightening supply (Reuters)
  • EIA says outlook for oil brightens as output disruptions erode surplus (Reuters)
  • Investors Fleeing $9 Trillion of Negative Yields Fuel Bond Binge (BBG)
  • Beaten-Up Hedge Fund Billionaires Reminisce About 'Golden Age' (BBG)

Japan Banks May Soon Pay Borrowers To Take Out Loans

Japanese banks may soon pay borrowers to accept loans if they can raise funds at even cheaper rates. Negative interest-rate lending is increasingly becoming a reality since the Bank of Japan started levying charges on idle cash. Lenders can now borrow for three months in the Tokyo interbank market at a record-low 6 basis-point annualized rate, versus 17 basis points since the BOJ move in January. They may eventually be able to be paid to borrow and then profit by paying less to lend, according to Credit Suisse Group AG, JPMorgan Chase & Co. and SMBC Nikko Securities Inc. This is also known as shoving money down people's throats... and then paying them for it.

Former Fed Official Warns Of The Death Of The Fed Funds Market

“What this means for the Fed’s reaction function isn’t clear,” Pozsar concludes. “But our instinct tells us that we will deal with a Fed inherently more sensitive to global financial conditions, inherently more sensitive to global growth and inherently more dovish than in the past…Far be it from yours truly to worry. Still, it’s hard to take comfort in the knowledge that the Drano we’ve all come to know, though maybe not love, is now off the market.

"The High Yield Bond Rally Won't Last" BofAML's 9 Reasons To Sell Any Strength In Junk

BofAML's Mike Cantopoulos' distaste for corporate fundamentals, displeasure with the efficacy of QE and easy monetary policy on spurring growth and inflation, and concerns that a further deterioration in credit conditions will create deeper economic troubles not appreciated by many have left credit markets with poor default adjusted valuations and little room to absorb a negative shock. He highlights nine key reasons below why BofAML believes this rally won't last (and in fact may have already seen its end).

"Global LIBOR Scapegoat" Turns To Public Crowdfunding To Fund Appeal

While UBS agreed to pay $1.5 billion to quickly settle charges that the bank manipulated LIBOR, trader Tom "Libor is too high, 'cos I've kept it artificially high" Hayes wasn't so lucky however. Alas, Hayes' pockets weren't that deep and he was the scapegoat UBS chose to offer up to the masses in the wake of the scandal, eventually being found guilty and sentenced to 14 years in jail (later reduced to 11 years).

Head Of Deutsche Bank "Integrity Committee" Fired Due To "Overzealousness"

Perhaps it is merely a coincidence but just weeks after Deutsche Bank became the first bank to admit to rigging the gold market (and agreeing to rat out fellow manipulators) yesterday afternoon the head of Deutsche Bank's "integrity committee" announced he would resign two years before his time, which is a polite way of saying he was fired.

Frontrunning: April 27

  • Trump, Clinton press closer to general election showdown (AP)
  • Acela primaries: Winners, losers (Hill)
  • Trump Says He's `Presumptive Nominee' as Clinton Wins Four (BBG)
  • In the battle for Hollywood endorsements - and cash - Clinton rules (Reuters)
  • U.S. Oil Rises Above $45 a Barrel for First Time Since November (BBG)
  • Spin: Near-Zero Growth Happens Often in Slow-Motion U.S. Economy (BBG)