Bloomberg reports that the head of Germany’s financial regulation agency that it is investigating allegations of manipulation between the “Too Big To Fail” banks in the currency and precious metals markets. The U.S. and U.K. have already launched probes into corruption in the international forex markets.
Elke Keonig, president of top German financial regulator Bafin, said in Franfort that the charges of currency rigging were “particularly serious, because such reference values are based — unlike Libor and Euribor — typically on transactions in liquid markets and not on estimates of the banks.”
At least a dozen firms have been contacted by authorities and more than 13 traders have been suspended, fired or put on leave in the currency case. Regulators are examining how traders, who communicated in instant-message groups, exchanged information on client orders and agreed how to trade at the time of the fix, five people with knowledge of the probes said last month.
Both German and British regulators have expanded their currency collusion probes to include manipulation of gold and silver prices. U.S. regulators ended their investigations into the silver market last year (some say prematurely) by declaring no wrongdoing.