Reuters has learned that U.S. and European authorities are closing in on arrests of traders responsible for conspiring to rig global benchmark rates. More than a dozen current and former employees of a few large banks have been investigated for the past three years for trying to manipulate the London Interbank Offered Rate (LIBOR) from around 2005 to 2009. Libor is used as a benchmark to set prices of loans, mortgages and derivative contracts, and can influence hundreds of trillions of dollars of assets. Prosecutors for the case have begun planning arrests of these individuals and regulators are pushing to punish the banks with fines—Barclays has already settled with $453 million in fines and penalties.
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