RBS To Pay $800 Million Libor Fine, No Criminal Charges

19/02/2013 20:58

Source: Bloomberg
 

Royal Bank of Scotland Group Plc is set to pay 400 million to 500 million pounds ($783 million) in fines for manipulating interest rates, the second-largest penalty imposed in a global regulatory probe, two people with knowledge of the matter said.

An announcement may be made as soon as today, said the people, who requested anonymity because they weren’t authorized to speak publicly. An RBS unit will plead guilty to criminal charges as part of a deal with the U.S. Justice Department, a person familiar with the talks said. It’s the third fine to result from a probe into whether lenders rigged the London interbank offered rate, or Libor. Investment banking chief John Hourican also was expected to resign, the people said.

No individuals will be criminally charged as the Justice Department announces its settlement with the bank, according to two people with direct knowledge of the matter.

The penalty is the biggest blow to Chief Executive Officer Stephen Hester’s attempt to overhaul the Edinburgh-based bank after it took 45.5 billion pounds in a 2008 taxpayer bailout, the largest in history. The fine, the third to result so far from the global probe, would exceed the 290 million pounds Barclays Plc paid in June, and be second only to the $1.5 billion UBS AG paid in December. Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne said this week that RBS should pay the U.S. fines by clawing back bonuses from its investment bankers.

“The sight of money coming in from the taxpayer to pay RBS Libor fines would have caused enormous public anger,” Osborne said Feb. 4 during a question-and-answer session in Bournemouth, southern England. “I’ve made it very clear to the bank, and the bank management accept this.”

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