Libor Scandal Was One Of The Biggest Term Paper

Length: 2 pages Subject: Economics Type: Term Paper Paper: #86105833
Excerpt from Term Paper :

LIBOR scandal was one of the biggest financial criminal manipulations that have penetrated the international economic system. The scandal was referred to as the rotten heart of finance by some. However, it was different than other financial scandals in the way the illegal activity occurred. Instead of the crime being perpetrated by one individual or a small group, it seemed that the whole organizations in the banks were filled with a toxic culture. The groups basically profited from small changes in the London Interbank Offered Rate or LIBOR.

The LIBOR is an average interest rate that is determined through the average of different interest rates offered by the banks in London. The scandal arose when it was discovered that many of the banks were colluding to manipulate this rate for their own financial gain or to make their bank appear to look better financial in regard to credit worthiness. The scale of this interbank market is enormous with over three hundred trillion dollars traded in derivatives.

The banks are supposed to submit the actual interest rates that they are paying or would realistically expect to pay when borrowing from other banks. The LIBOR is supposed to represent a measure of the total health of the London financial system because it is calculated to be an aggregate measure of the financial...

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If the banks are confident then they are supposed to report a lower interest rate and if there is uncertainty within the local exchanges then this would be illustrated by the banks posting a higher interest rate. The higher interest rate would illustrate that the banks perceived more risk in the markets.

The LIBOR rate had implications outside the UK as well. The LIBOR rate was actually used in the calculations of the United States derivative market and thus the scandal had significant international consequences. The U.S. used the rate for mortgages, student loans, financial derivatives, and an array of other financial products as something of a reference rate to determine how to value different assets and loan packages.

The scandal arose when people became conscious that this rate was being manipulated for many years. One former trader stated that the rate was manipulated ever since 1991. The controversy finally arose when the Wall Street Journal published an article that stated that many of the banks were posting lower interest…

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The LIBOR rate had implications outside the UK as well. The LIBOR rate was actually used in the calculations of the United States derivative market and thus the scandal had significant international consequences. The U.S. used the rate for mortgages, student loans, financial derivatives, and an array of other financial products as something of a reference rate to determine how to value different assets and loan packages.

The scandal arose when people became conscious that this rate was being manipulated for many years. One former trader stated that the rate was manipulated ever since 1991. The controversy finally arose when the Wall Street Journal published an article that stated that many of the banks were posting lower interest rates to hide their risk and make their positions look better in 2008 when the financial crisis began to emerge. The banks were manipulating the rate to make a profit on their large interest linked portfolios.

Barclays Bank, UBS, and other banks paid massive fines for their involvement in the scandal. For example, Barclays Bank was fined $200 million by the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, $160 million by the United States Department of Justice and £59.5 million by the Financial Services Authority for their role in fixing the LIBOR rates. UBS had to pay over a billion dollars in fines. However, some estimates state that the true costs of the manipulations to the public and private institutions that were affected above the six billion dollar mark.


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