BNP Paribas has been fined $350 million as part of a consent order entered into with the New York State Department of Financial Services (DFS) for “significant, long-term violations of New York banking law” in the bank’s global foreign-exchange business.
DFS says its investigation found the improper conduct at BNP included collusive activity by traders to manipulate FX prices and benchmark rates; executing fake trades to influence the exchange rates of emerging market currencies; and improperly sharing confidential customer information with traders at other large banks.
BNP Paribas (BNPP) has agreed a $246 million settlement with the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (FRB) relating to past misconduct in its foreign exchange business.
The settlement will be covered by existing provisions. This follows the announcement by BNPP of a settlement with the New York State Department of Financial Services on the 24th May relating to the same issue.
In reaching this settlement, the FRB acknowledged the bank’s group-wide remediation initiatives and the full cooperation of BNPP in the investigation.
When I joined a US investment bank in London as a graduate trainee in 1969, it was explained to me that they did not actually have a graduate programme nor were they particularly interested in the economics and politics that I had spent three years studying.
I had been hired because I had a sound education and they believed, after several interviews, that I had the qualities of honesty and integrity that they insisted on for all employees, at all levels of job function and experience.
People are fond of “looking at the bigger picture” but when it comes to the legal profession and FICC markets, frankly the bigger picture confuses me. How else can we explain how a number of traders are facing jail time and yet so many other traders are winning their unfair dismissal cases? To me, the issue clearly highlights the level of collateral damage in the industry and requires the banks (and regulators to a degree) to have a serious reappraisal of their approach.