UBS AG (NYSE:UBS) is reportedly near a settlement with both U.S. and U.K. officials in connection with allegations of Libor rigging. Under the settlement UBS would pay a fine of more than $1 billion after it was accused of manipulating benchmark interest rates.
The Wall Street Journal reports that the deal could be announced early next week, although discussions are still underway. Also the parties have been close to settling in the past, except the deals ended up unraveling. If the settlement for UBS AG (NYSE:UBS) is approved, then the bank follows Barclays PLC (NYSE:BCS) (LON:BARC) in settling allegations of manipulation of the London interbank offered rate (Libor). The $1 billion fine against UBS AG (NYSE:UBS) would be more than double the fine Barclays PLC (NYSE:BCS) (LON:BARC) had to pay.
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The settlement would finally bring resolution to numerous investigations conducted by various agencies in the U.K. and the U.S. Investigators have been looking at the Swiss bank for allegations of rate-rigging for quite some time. In fact UBS was the first bank to disclose that government authorities were investigating it for this type of allegations.
The bank has launched its own internal investigation in connection with the allegations and either suspended or fired approximately 20 managers and traders that were believed to have been involved. Also fraud investigators in the U.K. arrested three men in connection with the allegations against UBS, including Thomas Hayes, a former trader for the bank.
Today more than 12 other banks are still under investigation by authorities in several countries on allegations of rate-fixing. Several of the accused banks are reported to be close to settlements in their cases as well.