Apr 10, 2017

Barclays blamed BoE over lowering of Libor rate, claims BBC

A senior Barclays manager blamed the Bank of England for pressuring the lender to submit a lower reading for the key Libor interest rate during the 2008 financial crisis, according to the transcript of a conversation. The BoE has always denied it encouraged banks to submit false readings for Libor, which measures the rate at which banks can borrow from one another and is used as the basis for millions of loans. The tape shows that Mr Johnson - one of four Barclays bankers who were sent to prison for rigging Libor - objected, saying the Libor rules required him to put in rates based only on the cost of borrowing cash. The SFO is already investigating allegations that Barclays "Lowballed" its Libor submissions during the financial crisis to give a healthier impression of its borrowing costs. "Barclays was not immediately able to comment on the latest developments. In a statement on the Panorama tapes, BoE said the central bank had been"assisting the SFO's criminal investigations into Libor manipulation by employees at commercial banks and brokers by providing, on a voluntary basis, documents and records requested by the SFO. "The bank is committed to publishing materials relating to the SFO's investigations into benchmark manipulation when it is appropriate to do so. Until the SFO's ongoing prosecutorial activity relating to Libor and other benchmarks has concluded, the bank is not in a position to publish these materials."

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