British Govt. Backs Banking Probe

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Lawmakers in Britain on Thursday backed a plan to hold a government inquiry into the standards in the banking industry that led to Barclays’ rate-rigging scandal. Conservatives rejected the calls by the opposition Labour Party for an independent, judge-led investigation, similar to the Leveson Inquiry. During the politically charged debate, finance minister George Osborne and Labour’s shadow minister Ed Balls traded insults over who holds responsibility for the Barclays scandal. Barclays CEO Marcus Agius stepped down on Tuesday and then appeared before Parliament on Wednesday, one week after the bank was called out by regulators for manipulating interest rates. Barclays was fined $450 million for its role in rigging the key of Libor interest rates between 2005 and 2009.