The European Commission has slapped an extra antitrust charge sheet against Credit Suisse for its involvement in the manipulation of foreign exchange (forex) markets, according to a Bloomberg report.
The Swiss lender confirmed the fresh charges in addition to the earlier charges, which were introduced in July 2018 for sharing crucial market-related information in chatrooms. However, the bank denied all allegations against it.
“Credit Suisse continues to believe that it did not engage in any systemic conduct in the FX markets which violated the European Union’s competition rules, and is contesting the EC’s case,” the bank said in a statement.
The EU regulator’s original allegations named several major banks for their part in manipulating the currency benchmarks. Though most of the lenders settled with the regulator, Credit Suisse remains adamant pushing its innocence.
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The recently brought charges against the Swiss bank will further delay the final investigation report.
The FX Cartel
More than a dozen major multinational banking giants were accused of rigging the forex currency benchmark rates between 2003 and 2013, which is a market with daily volumes of multi-trillion dollars.
These banks are now facing probes in multiple jurisdictions. While many investment funds already moved against the banks in a London court, a US court allowed institutional investors to pursue a class-action lawsuit against 15 major banks for rigging forex rates.
Though the investigation is still ongoing, five banks, including Citi, Barclays and JPMorgan, paid $1.3 billion in fines to the EU antitrust regulator as a part of their settlement in 2019 for probes in only two chat rooms.
The activities of the so-called forex cartel could be massive as a defendant lawyer recently alleged that traders might have used around 200 chat rooms for coordinating in FX market manipulation.