Banks Said Poised to Settle With CFTC in FX-Rigging Cases

Banks Said Poised to Settle With CFTC in Currency-Rigging Cases
The upper floors of, from left, Citigroup Inc., No. 1 Canada Square, HSBC Holdings Plc and Barclays Plc stand in London. Barclays Plc, Citigroup Inc., HSBC Holdings Plc, JPMorgan Chase & Co., Royal Bank of Scotland Group Plc and UBS AG are in settlement talks with the FCA, people with knowledge of the situation have said. Photographer: Chris Ratcliffe/Bloomberg

Banks suspected of rigging the $5.3 trillion-a-day currency market are preparing to reach settlements as early as this week with the main U.S. derivatives regulator, according to a person with knowledge of the cases.

The Commodity Futures Trading Commission may levy fines of about $300 million against each firm, depending on the level of their involvement, said the person, who spoke on condition of anonymity because deals haven’t been announced. It’s unclear how many firms may settle with the CFTC as U.K. and U.S. bank regulators prepare to levy related penalties this week, the person said.

There was no immediate response to an e-mailed request for comment from the CFTC after normal business hours. The New York Times reported late yesterday on the talks with the agency.

Investigations are under way on three continents as authorities probe allegations that dealers at the world’s biggest banks traded ahead of clients and colluded to rig benchmarks used by pension funds and money managers to determine what they pay for foreign currencies.

The U.K. Financial Conduct Authority is poised to reach settlements as soon as this week with six banks, which together have set aside about $5.3 billion in recent weeks for legal matters including the currency investigations, people with knowledge of those talks have said.

Barclays Plc, Citigroup Inc., HSBC Holdings Plc, JPMorgan Chase & Co., Royal Bank of Scotland Group Plc and UBS AG are in settlement talks with the FCA, people with knowledge of the situation have said.

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