US charges three forex traders | 2017-01-12 |

US charges three forex traders

    12th January, 2017 12:20:22 printer

Prosecutors in the US have accused three former currency traders at major banks of trying to rig foreign exchange (forex) rates in the banking industry, BBC reports.

The three are Richard Usher, Rohan Ramchandani and Chris Ashton, They worked at, respectively, the banks JP Morgan, Citigroup and Barclays.

The charges are a follow-up after those banks, along with RBS, paid $2.5bn in fines in May 2015, after pleading guilty to conspiring to rig foreign exchange rates.

In a statement the US Department of Justice said the three men were charged over their "alleged roles in a conspiracy to manipulate" the price of US dollars and euros in the foreign currency exchange spot market.

"We previously secured criminal convictions of the financial institutions involved in the misconduct," said Principal Deputy Associate Attorney General Bill Baer.

"Today we seek to hold accountable the individuals who conspired on their behalf."

According to the indictment, between December 2007 and January 2013 a group of traders known as "the Cartel" or "the Mafia" including Mr Usher, Mr Ramchandani and Mr Ashton, "conspired to fix prices and rig bids for the euro-US dollar currency pair".

The DoJ statement also said the former bank traders were alleged to have "gained an unfair advantage on their counterparts by committing corporate fraud involving the manipulation of the foreign currency exchange".

Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates said: "Whether a crime is committed on the street corner or in the corner office, no one gets a free pass simply because they were working for a corporation when they broke the law."

"Today's indictment reiterates our commitment to holding individuals accountable for corporate misconduct," she added.