The EU Parliament and the ECB unknowingly or unwillingly fail to protect our financial assets

This week the European Parliament and the European Central Bank rather unknowingly or unwillingly failed to protect the European citizens from the attacks of ‘money sharks’. In two different occasions the two most important European institutions secured the bankers reign on peoples’ money. Let us take one thing at a time. When the average hard […]

The EU Commission implicates major banks in cartel cases, threatens with devastating fines

Three major international banking firms Crédit Agricole, HSBC and JPMorgan Chase came yesterday again under the watchful eye of the European Commission, for their role in financial sector cartels (interest rates and derivatives denominated in euro). It’s about financial products based on the Euribor (euro interbank offered rate), an interest rate benchmark. This interest rate […]

Commission offers discount on fines to banks for competition infringements

Today, the European Commission fined 8 major banks a total of € 1.7 billion for participating in cartels rigging interest rate benchmarks in markets for financial derivatives covering the European Economic Area (EEA). According to the Commission, four of these firms participated in a cartel relating to interest rate derivatives denominated in euro, and six […]

The EU lets the bankers go on rigging the benchmarks

The European Commission adopted yesterday additional “measures to restore confidence in benchmarks following Libor and Euribor scandals”. The new draft legislation complements the political agreement on Market Abuse Regulation proposed by the Commission last July and endorsed by the Parliament and the Council. Benchmark setting is not confined only to interest rates like Libor and […]

Stricter rules and tougher sanctions for market manipulation and financial fraud

The plenary session of the European Parliament followed yesterday a motion of the Economic and monetary affairs Committee and adopted in ‘the first reading’ the text of a draft Regulation providing for tougher sanctions for financial markets manipulation. This is an ordinary legislative procedure repealing Directive 2003/6/EC. According to a Parliament Press release issued afterwards […]

Commission’s feeble response to financial benchmarks fraud

On Wednesday 18 September the European Commission is expected to propose a draft legislation on financial benchmarks to protect their setting from fraud and collusion. The stakes are so big that surpass the wildest imagination. For example Libor, the London market interest rate benchmark, is used as a base for interest rates settlements all over […]

All talk but no action against fraudulent bankers

The European Commission plans to propose on Wednesday 18 September draft legislation against the fraudulent setting and use of financial benchmarks like Euribor, Libor and the Baltic Indices. This comes on top of investigations launched recently in London, New York even in Brussels, where bankers are being criminally prosecuted, and thirteen giant western investment banking […]

Trying to cure bank cancer with analgesics

Last week the European Central Bank issued a press release welcoming the EU Commission’s initiative to regulate the banking industry’s setting of benchmark interest rates, like the Euribor. Interbank interest rate benchmarks are systemic and vital to the entire financial system. Any failures may cause losses for investors, distort the real economy and undermine market […]

Banks cannot die but can be fined

The oldest Swiss bank was forced to temporarily shut down its US subsidiary yesterday, after its lawyers accepted that it has being helping at least 100 American citizens to avoid taxation. The bank Vegelin, of St Gallen, established in 1741 is accused by the US tax authority, the famous IRS, that it has directed those […]

“Private” sea freight indexes hide Libor like skeletons?

The almost three centuries old Baltic Exchange is a private and closed platform, where around 60 shipping brokers based mainly in London are contributing voluntarily their cargo prices. On the base of those contributions the Exchange publishes benchmark freight price indexes for a round number of 70 sea routes and vessel categories. The indexes are […]