Deutsche Bank Fined $2.5B For Scheming With Other Banks

Deutsche Bank on Thursday became the latest big bank to settle accusations that it contributed to rigging Libor interest rates.  The London Interbank Offered Rate, the interest rate of choice for trillions of dollars in municipal bonds, mortgages, student loans and other debt.

To settle the case, the Deutsche Bank agreed to pay a record $2.5 billion in penalties that have already stung Barclays and UBS. Deutsche Bank, Germany’s largest financial institution and a problem child in the eyes of regulators has also agreed to accept a criminal guilty plea for the British subsidiary at the center of the case. It is the most significant banking unit to accept a criminal plea in the Libor rigging investigation.

The size of the Libor fine, which eclipsed the $1.5 billion UBS agreed to pay in 2012, reflected in part the breadth of wrongdoing that UK and US authorities have uncovered. Regulators in both countries have criticized the bank for lax oversight of traders and a failure to respond to warning signs of misconduct. The bank, the authorities said, also dragged its feet in providing information, taking two years to provide audio recordings requested by investigators and “accidentally” destroying some evidence.

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