JPMorgan Said to Pay Most in $1.86 Billion CDS Settlement

JPMorgan Chase & Co. headquarters in New York.

JPMorgan Chase & Co. headquarters in New York.

Photographer: Ron Antonelli/Bloomberg
  • Morgan Stanley, Barclays, Goldman paying next-largest amounts
  • Deal would end years of litigation from group of investors

JPMorgan Chase & Co. is set to pay almost a third of a $1.86 billion settlement to resolve accusations that a dozen big banks conspired to limit competition in the credit-default swaps market, according to people briefed on terms of the deal.

JPMorgan is paying $595 million, with the lender’s portion of the accord largely based on the plaintiffs’ measure of market share, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the firms haven’t disclosed how they’re splitting costs. The settlement also enacts reforms making it easier for electronic-trading platforms to enter the CDS market, according to a statement Thursday from attorneys for the plaintiffs, which include the Los Angeles County Employees Retirement Association.

Morgan Stanley, Barclays Plc and Goldman Sachs Group Inc. are paying about $230 million, $175 million and $164 million, respectively, the people said. Plaintiffs’ lawyers disclosed the approximate size of the settlement in Manhattan federal court last month, saying they were still ironing out details. They updated the total Thursday.

The accord averts a trial following years of litigation by hedge funds, pension funds, university endowments, small banks and other investors, who sued as a group. They alleged that global banks -- along with Markit Group Ltd., a market-information provider in which the banks owned stakes -- conspired to control the information about the multitrillion-dollar credit-default-swap market in violation of U.S. antitrust laws.

Credit Suisse Group AG, Deutsche Bank AG and Bank of America Corp. will pay about $160 million, $120 million and $90 million, respectively, the people said. BNP Paribas SA, UBS Group AG, Citigroup Inc., Royal Bank of Scotland Group Plc and HSBC Holdings Plc also would pay less than $100 million apiece, the people said.

Spokesmen for the banks said the companies had no immediate comment or didn’t immediately respond to messages seeking comment.

“We look forward to the court reviewing the settlement and bringing this important matter to a just conclusion,” Dan Brockett and Bruce Simon, lawyers representing the plaintiffs, said in the statement.

The case is In Re Credit Default Swaps Antitrust Litigation, 13-md-02476, U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York (Manhattan).

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