Ryan Reich, the ex-Barclays trader on trial for rigging Libor, was today reprimanded by the judge for shouting after interrupting a co-defendant who was being questioned by a prosecutor.
Reich was reported to have shouted “no, no, no, no” from his seat after the prosecutor asked fellow ex-Barclays trader Alex Pabon on the stand if the Libor rate affected swaps valuations.
Reprimanded for Interruptions
After interrupting the proceedings, Reich’s lawyer told him to be quiet and the judge commented that “interruptions should not take place.” Pabon then answered affirmatively that Libor did affect swaps valuations.
The two traders are currently on trial with former colleagues Stylianos Contogoulas, Jay Merchant and Jonathan Mathew for conspiring from 2005 through 2007 to fix Libor, the benchmark tied to trillions of dollars in securities and loans. Another ex-trader, Peter Johnson, has pleaded guilty to the charge.
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The outburst took place on the third day of Pabon’s testimony. Pabon was said to have made over 30 requests to change Barclays’s Libor submission to Contogoulas. He then allegedly passed them on to Johnson, who oversaw the bank’s rate submissions.
Pabon said that he was told by his boss, Merchant, to make the requests and didn’t think it was improper as they were also in line with the wider derivatives market.
Reich and Pabon worked in the New York office of Barclays with Merchant at the time the allegations were made. Pabon exhibited emotional behaviour on the stand on Thursday when he was testifying about his Barclays’ career. He described to the jury how he felt burned out at the bank and wanted to leave after several big trading losses.
He also claimed that Barclays fostered a culture where traders faced significant consequences, including firings, if they didn’t follow instructions of the bosses.
He concluded by telling the jury that after leaving Barclays later that year he moved to Texas and never worked in banking again.
The case continues.