Wall Street banks got hit with $US5.8 billion in fines for their roles in the 2008 LIBOR interest rate and currency rigging scandal on Wednesday, and five of them — Citicorp, JPMorgan, Barclays, RBS, and UBS — have pleaded guilty to criminal charges.
A lot of the incriminating information came from transcripts of online chatroom conversations, and the quotes and anecdotes are a complete disaster.
In one instance, recounted by the New York State Department of Financial Services, a Barclays forex trader was looking for an invitation to a particularly exclusive chatroom known as “The Cartel,” which included traders from Citigroup, JP Morgan, UBS, RBS, and Barclays.
The trader, who was the main Euro trader for Barclays in 2011, made various arguments about how he “would add value” to the chatroom.
Ultimately, they let him join for a one-month trial, but with a pretty somber warning:
“[M]ess this up and sleep with one eye open at night.”
Fortunately for that trader (but probably not so fortunately, in the end), he was allowed to stay in the group until it was dissolved in 2012.
The NY State Department of Financial Services said that a number of Barclays employees who were involved in “wrongful conduct” no longer work at the bank, and announced that eight additional Barclays employees would be terminated for engaging in misconduct in connection to the forex market manipulation.
It’s unclear whether this guy was one of them.