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Dec 19

UBS: A billion-quid fraud, and nobody went to jail

Why is there a 99.9% correlation between influence and freedom?

UBS today settled its global libor fraud case by paying fines of just under £1 billion – over twice the fine dumped on Barclays.

No senior manager at UBS will be losing their jobs, or resigning. And naturally, none of them will be going to jail.

UBS has paid the UK’s Financial Services Authority alone £160m, the largest fine ever levied by the regulator. The FSA mentions ‘ a litany of abuse and fraud perpetrated by a significant number of employees over a number of years from January 1 2005 to 31 December 2010.’ UBS ‘routinely manipulated Libor and Euribor to benefit trading positions and gave the job of determining its Libor submissions to traders themselves in a deliberate conflict of interest’. The bank colluded with inter-dealer brokers and individuals at other banks.

Two senior Tory donors, Michael Spencer and Michael Fallon, were employed at the most senior level in the biggest libor broker in the EU. Neither is even under suspicion. Neither has been cautioned. Nobody anywhere to date in all the banks and brokers involved in this, the greatest rate-rigging scandal in financial history, has gone beyond the most superficial police questionning.

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