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Quelle Surprise! Barclays Settlement on Massive Interest Rate Price Fixing Illustrates Bank Crime Pays Well

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It’s become oh-so-predictible that banks get at most “cost of doing business” punishments that they almost seem not worth noting. But that’s precisely why it’s important to keep tabs on them, to let the complicit authorities and the perps know that the public is not fooled, even it is not in a position to do anything about it…yet…

Even though the Libor/Euribor price-fixing scandal hasn’t gotten much attention in the US, this is a really big deal. Admittedly, it did not crash the economy the way toxic RMBS and CDOs did. Instead, it was a massive price manipulation, the sort of victimless-looking crime where stealing a few basis points over a monster volume of transactions has a huge aggregate impact. This scheme went on for a full five years, with 20+ banks fingered, meaning everyone who was anyone was in on the game. As Ben Walsh put it:

The importance of Libor and, to a lesser extent, Euribor, is hard to overstate. They are used to value of hundreds of trillions of dollars of financial instruments. Or as Matt Levine puts it, they “set the rates on pretty much all the loans and swaps in the world … CFTC order mentions $350 trillion of [over-the-counter] swaps, $10 trillion of loans, and $437 trillion of CME eurodollar contracts indexed to Libor alone”.

Barclays is first to settle, and given the scale and potential profitability of this activity, the fine looks paltry: $450 million among the FSA, the CFTC, and the Department of Justice (£230 million to the US authorities, £60 million to the FSA). The DOJ has granted “conditional leniency” on anti-trust charges. Price fixing is criminal under the Sherman Act. Four top executives, including CEO Bob Diamond are also giving up bonuses this year.

It’s a bit early to reach hard conclusions, since Barclays got reduced penalties for cooperating early. We’ll be able to calibrate the degree of lack of seriousness by the punishments meted out on the other banks. But there is no reason to think we’ll see a sea change, despite the magnitude and duration of this scheme. Masaccio correctly included the settlement in a list of “This Week in Financial Not-Crime.” Guardian’s editorial inveighs on why much more serious action is needed:

The £60m it [Barclays] will hand over to the Financial Services Authority alone is the biggest penalty ever levied by the City watchdog – yet the nature of the alleged transgression is so fundamental, so serious and, according to officials, so “widespread” that it appears utterly inadequate. Nor will the decision of Mr Diamond and his team to apologise and forfeit this year’s bonuses take the sting out of the matter…

What regulators appears to have uncovered is a scam at the heart of a £350tn market; one that ultimately affects how much families pay on their tracker mortgages, as well as the costs of transactions for big City institutions. It should not be settled with a fine, no matter how large, but must be followed up with a further investigation into Barclays – making public just how many employees took part (rather than yesterday’s mentions of Trader C and Manager E), and how they will be punished, up to and including criminal proceedings…

Strip away the acronyms and the charges against Barclays are straightforward. Its traders and senior management are accused of tampering with two key interest rates to bolster their own profits. And they apparently did this not once, but repeatedly over four years. Indeed, the practice seems to have become so widespread that staff joke about it in emails: “Always happy to help, leave it with me, Sir.”; “Done … for you big boy”; “I love you”. This from the bank that earlier this year held citizenship days for its staff – and which, through state guarantees and emergency provisions of liquidity, has been supported by the British taxpayer.

There has been much talk about banks being too big to fail, or too big to bail. The picture presented by Wednesday’s charge sheets is altogether simpler: throughout boom and bust, Barclays staff saw themselves as being too big to play by the rules.

The e-mails get at what is most disturbing about this, the banality of it all. At least with Bankers Trust, the public was roused by recordings of traders who discussed ripping clients’ faces off and luring them into the dark to fuck them. The anodyne nature of these crimes, the routinized ripping off of the public on a scale hard to imagine, took place via small nicks over all the deals in huge swathes of the capital markets.

The Financial Times holds out some hope, pointing out that the European Commission was not part of the settlement and is continuing its own probe. The authorities can still target individuals at the bank. And it is vulnerable to private suits:

While the settlements focus on “attempted manipulation”, the DoJ statement of facts said, “on some occasions, however, the manipulation of Barclays’ submissions affected the fixed rates,” a statement that could leave the bank open to class action lawsuits from Libor users.

But all we need to do is contrast this case with the municipal bid-rigging prosecution described by Matt Taibbi in the current Rolling Stone. Here you have three individuals at GE Capital going to jail for price fixing, which is crime under the Sherman Act. But they were merely the arms and legs of big banks. Where were the prosecutions of the higher ups, or of the senior officers of banks who were in on this con? We see the same pattern over and over: justice is meted out only on the foot soldiers, those far enough away from the executive ranks so as not to call into question the integrity of the system. The irony of it all is the public is well aware of how crooked the financial services industry is (the poll data alone is proof). But for the elites, it is vital that they not admit that something is rotten in Denmark, for if they did, they’d have to do something about it.

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36 comments

  1. K Ackermann

    This one should have some traction. It messed with the 100%

    Anyone who is paying interest on anything has to wonder if they are paying a victim surcharge.

    And what about tax revenues? Interest is deductable.

    But the 1%, with their interest rate swaps and leverage… it could get ugly.

    1. F. Beard

      This is Christmas in June for a bank hater like myself.

      I’m rather sick of people getting filthy rich for wrecking the economy, threatening world peace and being considered “respectable” to boot.

        1. arby

          Yves, who are (were) the respectable board members who – along with their celebrated philanthropic activities – engaged in this pervasive fraud at the expense of hundreds of millions if not billions of people?

          I believe that it is important to remember that the coporation is managed by people. And those people should be identified.

  2. Joe

    Yves said:
    We see the same pattern over and over: justice is meted out only on the foot soldiers, those far enough away from the executive ranks so as not to call into question the _integrity_ of the system.

    Right! This shows how weak our public institutions have become relative to their private sector counterparts.

    So why isn’t there any reform? Jeffrey Sachs says he believes that the political system will _eventually_ lead to reform– it will be in some political party’s interest to protect it’s constituents. But what if he’s wrong? There are counter-examples and sometimes it does get pretty nasty, before things get better.

    In my opinion, politically, we are so far away from moving back to anything like a government of the people for the people– I mean, many are still campaigning against worker’s unions!

    You know, the terrible thing is that, the current financial exploitation of the vast majority of society, isn’t _producing_ anything tangible. It’s not like the industrial revolution, which saw even as it was exploitative an explosion in material goods available.

    1. Capo Regime

      Citing Jefrey Sachs belief that things will get better is a thin reed upon which to rest any hope! Economist saying things will get better is well somewhat comical no? This is the same Sachs who said Greece’s problems were trivial and was of the view it was a media flare up and not a real issue. Many school children also believe (as do political hacks) that our system is a marvel and that soon enough our leaders will listen to the better angels of their nature and all will get better……Now that would be a surprise to beat all surprises. Its all predicated on Sachs being correct–fat chance.

      1. citalopram

        There’s nothing in the works to put pressure on the 1 percent to change their ways. There are no protests of significance, and there is no political torque to get the reform ball rolling anywhere.

        The only way to make the one percent behave (or disappear) is for masses of people to rise up and make it happen. Americans are truly stupid cattle led around by their nose rings.

  3. Hugh

    Why is there no disgorgement? I mean you can calculate factors to cover the degree of manipulation and multiply that by the cashflows passing through the banks. Oh, and to answer my own question, such action would bankrupt the banks involved. So just as any mark to market audit of bank balancesheets would show they were insolvent after the housing bust, the meltdown, and the ongoing European crisis, this is just another one to add to the list. It is not just that the banks are insolvent they are multiply insolvent.

    This is a classic case of control fraud. Something this big going on for this long had to be known and approved by the top echelons of the banks. But again just as we saw with Dimon and the fail whale affair, top bank brass will simply lie and say they didn’t know even though it was their business to know (and of course, they did know).

    We live in a kleptocracy. So the idea that banks and their managements will get off with fines that are laughable in comparison to the size and effects of the frauds is a given. That those managements will completely escape without doing any jail time is also a given. Kleptocracy is looting by the elites for the elites covered by the elites. Everything else is kabuki for the rubes.

    1. Up the Ante

      “And Barclays won’t face criminal prosecutions, because of what the DOJ calls its “extraordinary cooperation”. Individual employees, though, are the subject of ongoing criminal investigation. – Ben Walsh ”

      http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2012/06/27/counterparites-barclays-450-million-libor-settlement/

      Will DoJ calculate the tally and publish it ?

      Or has DoJ forgotten its “head above the parapet”, ’tis, or their underwriting of the big bankers’ ‘quality of life’ is seen as a sham.

      http://ftalphaville.ft.com/blog/2012/06/27/1062301/libor-manipulation-done-for-you-big-boy/

    2. Claire

      How many thousands of lives have been destroyed by financial gangsters with their systematic, constant, vicious, remorseless crimes?

      Yet according to the media nothing ever happened. Even while it was happening it wasn’t happening, it didn’t matter, it was of no interest.

      For the elites to maintain their power it’s essential that people remain in complete ignorance.

      By now there are so many victims that it’s almost pathetic to keep asking the authorities for justice. The only justice for the victims would be revenge, yet revenge at this time would only play into the hands of the ruling klepto-psycho-paths.

      We’re seeing the end of the democratic lie, and it’s making us into foreigners in our own countries.

      Perhaps the only way to survive is to abandon our fear and despise their crimes with all the strength we have left.

      Remembering everything, resisting through our memory, telling stories that the dominant class attempt to silence, refusing to believe a single word they tell us.

      This could be a beginning.

    3. Jackrabbit

      Hugh: Why is there no disgorgement?

      From Bloomberg:

      While regulators detailed the attempts to manipulate the rate, they stopped short of claiming the traders were successful. That may prove a stumbling block for private lawsuits claiming that holders of securities tied to Libor were harmed by the conduct, Markham said.

      1. LeonovaBalletRusse

        J, totally bogus: They WERE “SUCCESSFUL” in accomplishing the fix, and the record of the keystroke should be proof of this deed/act. Whether the OUTCOME of the deed/act was successful or not is IMMATERIAL.

        1. OpenThePodBayDoorHAL

          Put a fork in it, it’s done, completely finished. The era of semi-civilized commerce, rules-based, with at least shreds of justice for those who have been defrauded, is over. This will pass with little notice by the defrauded millions and even less retribution on the criminals. Which reminds me: we need to start using the correct language to describe these various actors on the stage. All bankers will be referred to as either “criminals” “thugs” or “gangsters” until further notice. A politician or regulator will only be be referred to as a “prostitute”, or alternately a “criminal” or “traitor”. And a member of the public should only be referred to as either a “chump”, a “serf”, or better yet a “moron”.
          That way we won’t be surprised when the “criminals” get the “prostitute’s” help in stealing from the “morons”.

  4. Ancient Brit

    Maybe nothing serious will happen but I can tell you that, this time, the British public is baying for blood.
    It may not be so easy for the 1% and the politicians to handle.

    1. Up the Ante

      The naked face of the War on Terror Victims and its “cooperation” surcharge, in translation.

    2. LeonovaBalletRusse

      Will the entire population outside the City walls descend on the City with torches and axes?

  5. Conscience of a Conservative

    This crime is no different than the butcher who plays with the scale, there are huge numbers of investors who are long libor and have been cheated out of income. I would think a huge class action lawsuit is quite possible. And surprised I’m not hearing Barclay’s talk about the home owners and borrowers who saved money by virtue of taking on libor based debt. Investing in anything based on good faith reporting is crazy. Perhaps we’ll hear about the U.S. gov’t fudging CPI in the future.

    1. bold'un

      The butcher/scales analogy is not quite right. It’s more if the butcher gets a questionnaire about harmful bacteria on his meat counter. If he answers ‘yes’ he is out of business, so it would be naive to expect him to be truthful on this one!
      A solvent Bank is a bank that can fund itself at the finest rates. Why should anyone maintain an account with a bank that has trouble funding itself?

    2. LeonovaBalletRusse

      Anyone who had taken on “LIBOR based debt” was screwed by the “successful manipulations” of the LIBOR at every point of “entry” no matter if the outcome were successful or not.

      Where does Geoffrey Robertson stand on this issue? it’s a test.

  6. K Ackermann

    “Happy to help you, sir”

    Who was on the other end of that conversation that they felt they could call in a rate change?

    Who was that person?

    1. Ms G

      Good question, as is the one: why, in view of all these press releases from US and UK law enforcement and regulatory agencies, do we still not have the answer.

      These are the small ways by which culpability gets vaporized.

      1. LeonovaBalletRusse

        MsG, in the “digital age” can they shred the RECORD of the keystroke entry, the “smoking gun?”

  7. Enrico Malatesta

    It’s something to see the pushback against any & all suggestions of a financial transaction tax when it might flow to the government coffers, yet look at the acceptance when Financiers are the direct beneficiaries!

  8. bold'un

    It is a little ironic all the same for the state to accuse the banks for underestimating LIBOR when this was the number one policy of the UK and US financial authorities in 2008…

    This is not just a banking problem. Consider the present plight of Italy, Spain et al: the high prices they are paying to borrow are not just a mathematical cost on the government finances. They are also a counterproductive notice that broadcasts ‘don’t do business with us’. The crisis meetings of the EU are about bringing them down.

    A huge distortion is also visible in the current very low mortage rates. Even in Spain, prime mortages are routinely set at Euribor + 180bps which is below their government bills. Similarly in the US, mortgage borrowers who have proved themselves (as a collective) to be a poor risk are paying vastly less than many foreign governments and US Corporations would pay to borrow dollars for 30 years.

    We must either have market-set interest rates or regulated interest rates; if we try and have both at the same time, distortions are inevitable.

    1. LeonovaBalletRusse

      bold’un, further: Let’s see the still “sovereign nations” of the EU file suit against Barclays and any other “party” involved with LIBOR-tampering.

  9. jsmith

    “The e-mails get at what is most disturbing about this, the banality of it all.”

    All are participant members of an elite groupthink which has directly led to the murders of hundreds of thousands of innocent people and the commission of an untold numbers of war crimes globally.

    Look at how “anodyne” murder and war crimes have become in our society.

    And you’re surprised that financial fraud is so blithely discussed?

    At this point in time, why are still surprised that an elite class of murderers and war criminals are also thieves?

  10. William Neil

    This is a hugely important case because it goes to the heart of market fundamentalism, the near religious faith in the power, infallibility, and integrity of markets, the secular faith we have been living with since the mid-1970′s.

    The work of Joseph Stiglitz has already shown us that markets are very imperfect, with assymetrical knowledge rampant, meaning the parties to trades or deals don’t have equal knowledge, as I’m finding out trying to sell art prints. I don’t have access to the distressed sales at auctions which dealers do, and those prices drive down the prices other art dealers are willing to pay.

    So we’re not so far from the old charge that Wall Street and financial markets all, and always, run on insider knowledge in one form or another, legal and illegal.

    But in LIBOR, you have a prominent, almost universal symbol and benchmark which should have been treated like a capitalist “sacrament” by the “players” in the system itself who were trusted in setting it: instead, we see the casual way in which rigging this market interest rate was bantered about…

    I’ve been wondering, recently, about the charges made by some commentators, well outside the mainstream, that the huge Interest Rate Swap market, including, especially, that for the sale of US Treasury Bonds, may not be entirely on the level.

    In brief, the suggestion is that the IRS market is artifically goosing the demand for Treasury Bonds, thus keeping the crucial yields (interest rates) low – which benefits the banks “carry trade” and the United States’ ability to borrow at low interest rates.

    Krugman has his explanation as to why the “bond vigilantes” haven’t ridden here after all that hard riding in Europe, which may be a too innocent reading. One also has to consider that those making the charges about the Interest Rate Swaps tend to be gold bugs, anti-fed and anti-fiat currency types, and therefore also probably anti-Keynesians and likely opponents of public jobs programs…very likely austerians in the extreme. And we have the added twist that if what they say is true about the bond purchases, there will be a “hide behind the flag” aspect, keeping the dollar strong and the US solvent in terrible financial times, a place where patriotism meets the low interest program keeping the banks liquid if not solvent. So their case for treasury bond tampering poses additional problems for those of us on the left that realize that some form of a deficit financing FED is the only known way to get out of depression conditions. Unless you believe in “self healing” markets under these conditions.

    I haven’t made up my mind, but looking at the rigging in the muncipal bond market, the price fixing there, and now surrounding LIBOR, one has to weigh very seriously the possibility that there is no market so sacred that capitalism’s “finest” would not consider tampering with it.

    1. LeonovaBalletRusse

      WN, precisely, AS IF the “Market” existed apart from its human “functionaries”–even those “functionaries” behind the computer programs of HFT and any other “machinery.” The Human Agents who CAUSE any actions to take place in the guts of any “trading” or “exchanging” or “calculating” machines–even “at the speed of light” with apparent autonomy–must be held financially liable. This means “quants” who did their Master’s bidding AND the Masters who did the bidding.

      Put the quants under oath to fight for their lives and see if they squeal.

    2. monday1929

      The “possibility” you wish to “seriously weigh” will seem obvious to most americans by the end of next year; that all the elements, or “stage props”, of capitalism are broken.
      JPM, the corruption of the Interest Rate swaps and derivatives “markets”(In the multi-trillions) and the National Security State are as one. People are dying, as Yves bravely pointed out on Moyers, and many more will die to keep the busted edifice from showing its brokeness.

  11. F. Beard

    It occurs to me that an “Anti-Bank Party” would have widespread appeal. It should limit itself to the issue of ethical money creation and a universal bailout. It should have no other platform, imo.

    How’s that for a “Big Tent?”

  12. cripes

    Yet another revelation of massive theft and corruption that will elicit squeels of outrage from bloggers and campaigns toasts for the perpetrators.

  13. I love swapping

    Im going to be bashed here by other persons in this forum.
    But frankly i utterly appalled by this Libor manipulation story, because in my opinion, there is strictly nothing wrong about it.
    Reading the reports, youve got these funny emails which can be seem very crude and shocking but when looking at the actual FACTS, the real story is very much different than it is being reported. and because I believe this blog has always tried to be consistent and trying to be honest, i hope my message will get some attention

    Whats Libor ? a rate which is daily published by a selected # of dealers and used as a reference for trillions of derivatives. its supposed to represent the interbank UNSECURED funding rate
    the problem with this rate, is that since 2007 its no longer relevant at all ? why ? because basically the interbank unsecured market has shrunk and doesnt exist anymore except for o/n or perhaps 1w. but the references for swaps is a 3m or 6m rate (sometimes a 1m or 12m rate, but 90%-99% of libor swap trades are referenced on these 3m or 6m rates)
    Now most of the interbank market is on a SECURED basis, for example REPOing all sorts of assets.
    So basically the Libor doesnt exist anymore, think of it more like a fixing, based on mutual confidence and belief by market users. whats amazing is people still use Libor swaps to hedge, but the reality is there is no better alternative yet.

    So let me explain also a bit more in detail, because its getting more complicated. banks have been accused of “manipulating Libor”. but what is it exactly they are accused of ? well of contributing Libor 0.01% higher or lower than their competitor because it “suits their position”. but because Libor is an average, and the highest and lowest rates are excluded, by doing so, the individual bank might influence perhaps the fixing by being 0.00125% higher or lower, perhaps 0.0025%. if you have a REALLY BIG position it could mean tens of thousands $, really difficult to be more than that.
    But what is misunderstood, is that the swaps market is a zero-sum game and that most of the volume is concentrated with the big dealers. which means that if -say- Barclays wants the fixing to go down because it has a big Fixing, its very likely that JP Morgan has a big fixing on the other way and that JP morgan would logically quote libor higher if barclays quote it lower, so that the net effect is close to 0.

    The problem with Libor derivatives is that there is no physical delivery. Everytime there is no physical delivery for a derivative, there is this kind of problem. If you have an option or futures expiry with CASH settlement, then it’s a normal behaviour for participants to quote their way just before the expiry. For example, if youre long a call you want to push the market higher. Because if you bought this call as a hedge, to replace this hedge, you would have to buy back the underlying at the exact closing price. Thus if the fixing is high (relative to the actual physical market) you are more likely to buy cheaper. If you “forget” to put a buy order at the close, then the close could be artificially low because the option seller would have not forgotten to put his order and youd end up with a loss because youd scramble to buy back the underlying to roll your hedge in the physical market. So the expiry goes smoothly only if the option longs put buy orders at the close, matching the option shorts who put sell orders, and then the market would be balanced. For some regulators this behaviour has been thought as price manipulation, but it really isn’t.

    One way around this would be to make all derivatives physical delivery only, but on rates that’s impossible because theres a credit component when lending money to someone. And physical delivery has problems on its own such like squeezes…
    There is no perfect solution.

    Another example easier to understand is simply how dealers quote bonds or stocks. Forget a minute about libor, There is no single price for a bond. Market makers don’t all quote the same prices, otherwise there would be no market. If the “market” is 101-102 in a bond, if youre long and don’t want to get hit, but want to offer, you would be 100.80 – 101.80. if youre short and want to buy back youd quote it 101.20-102.20.
    The aggregation of all these prices within all market makers, make the best bid and best ask. Dealers have different quotes for the same instrument, and their quote is based on their inventory (or view on the market). Would you talk of market manipulation here ? where is that different from the Libor fixing mechanism

    If you read the press at the early time of the scandal, politicians/regulators were screaming because Libor was being manipulated and being fixed too high (remember when libor 3m peaked around 5% end of 2008 ? ) . now libor 3m is a mere 0.46% and barely moving at all.
    We’ve had day to day moves of (way) more than 0.25% sometimes, and were talking MANIPULATION because banks are contributing 0.01% lower or higher resulting in fixing being perhaps 0.00125% higher or lower ????

    The real MANIPULATION is that at that time, LIBOR was not (MUCH) higher than it really was fixing, because it was nearly impossible to secure unsecured funding at ANY price, perhaps 10% (!), especially in $. Indeed, if looking at the FX swap market which contrarily to Libor fixings give REAL indication of the actual cost of funding,
    The synthetic USD rate at which European banks funded was more than 1% higher than published USD Libor rates. The real scandal is that contributors were procrastinating about Libor being 0.01% higher or lower to suit their position while they should have collectively set it much much higher.

    So what is it all about ??? Its really just banker bashing and scapegoating. Like angry and blaming speculators for attacking Greece and saying Greece had no financial problems. Come on, who has bankrupted Greece ? Libor going up making politicians angry, sure it must be the fault of some speculators !!! This absolutely stupid line has been repeated so many times, everybody believes it now. So bankers need to be punished for that

    To be honest, it’s kind of a nice reversal of things. For many years bankers and corporations have used the fine print to escape taxes and regulations with off-balance sheet schemes, so now, the regulator is using the fine print to bash bankers, earn some fines, and putting pressure on overpaid banksters CEOs to quit their job. I would say its fine play for the regulator if you think about it as a war.

    But for the unpartial observer, I think you cannot endorse the point of view of the regulator. Barclays has settled because they know there is no point of fighting the regulator and want to put this story behind. They avoided prosecution against their staff. I think they took the right business decision to give in.

    If you want to criticize and blame banks, don’t blame them on that Libor stuff. Blame them on mismarking tens or hundreds of billions of assets on their balance sheet, marking them at par when theyre not even worth 50%. Blame them for insider trading which is an obvious occurrence EVERYDAY in the market. But its not the way its working … why ? because the reality is politics need banks to buy their crappy government debt and cannot pressure them to absolute death (while most of them are insolvent). Why don’t we see more insider trading cases ? perhaps we’d be finding too many scandals involving politicians….

    But don’t blame the swap trader who’s just tried to make a living in the market following the rules of the market.

    This story is really just about posturing, taking some money on banks without levying a tax, and winning votes. Not about tackling real issues.

    1. I love swapping

      http://ftalphaville.ft.com/blog/2012/06/27/1062301/libor-manipulation-done-for-you-big-boy/

      “Barclays’ submission on that day for three month US dollar LIBOR was half a basis point lower than the day before, rather than being unchanged”
      Submitter: “I am going 90 altho 91 is what I should be posting”.

      come on… actual cash for 3m in interbank market quotes in 1/8th of a point (=0.125%) is moving your contribution by 0.005% or 0.01% manipulation ??

      the problem is rather in 2008 when
      As the U.S. Dollar senior submitter said in October 2008 to his supervisor at the time, “following on from my conversation with you I will reluctantly, gradually and artificially get my libors in line with the rest of the contributors as requested. I disagree with this approach as you are well aware. I will be contributing rates which are nowhere near the clearing rates for unsecured cash and therefore will not be posting honest prices.”

      and then were talking about differences of 0.5% possibly or more, Libor being TOO LOW. remember all this bashing about speculators and manipulatio about Libors being TOO HIGH ?

      why were LIBORs too low ? because there was no money market at all, and when dealers moved their contribution up everyday, it moved already by so large, some may have been AFRAID of moving them so high so quickly… so there was a “lagging” effect because we were in an uncharted territory when suddenly money markets didnt work anymore, and people didnt know how to contribute a rate on a market which didnt exist anymore, so they were just mimicking each other…

      pls open a bloomberg chart and look at the history of libor in 2006 and 2008. and youll see whats really about.

      Diamond apologized for wrongdoing, how could he not ? but certainly all the evidence so far ive seen in the newspaper or on the blog is not convincing me there was so much wrongdoing that the media says.

      its scapegoating. lets talk about fake valuations of balance sheets, both of banks, and of the governments.

      the biggest manipulator of Libor and rates, are the Central banks intervening in the money and bond markets, putting rates at artificially low prices, and depriving honest fixed income savers of hundreds of billions, and destabilizing markets in the long run. thats the real scandal.

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