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January 11, 2013

Former UBS bosses deny Libor knowledge

Four former top UBS executives on Thursday denied all knowledge of Libor manipulation during their tenures, insisting they had not realised their bank’s rate-setting mechanism was under scrutiny until reading about it in the newspapers years after they had left the institution.

Despite having highlighted “structured Libor” in a December 2007 investor presentation as one of UBS’s most lucrative businesses, former chief executive Marcel Rohner said the term was shorthand for all interest rate derivates and he had never looked into the bank’s Libor trading. “I was fighting for survival,” Mr Rohner, who headed the bank from 2007 to 2009, told a UK parliamentary commission. “We had three capital raisings in 10 months and eight profit warnings.”

UBS paid $1.5bn to UK, US and Swiss regulators for manipulating both the London Interbank Offered Rate and Euribor from 2005 and 2010. Barclays has also paid more than $450m in penalties. When he read details of the charges, Mr Rohner – who called some of those hired by UBS in the past mercenaries – felt “shocked and embarrassed”.”


Read full Financial Times article here

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