Japan’s biggest bank suspends trader in rate probe


Japan’s biggest bank said Thursday it had suspended a London-based trader over the widening interest-rate rigging scandal in Britain that has rocked confidence in financial markets.
“One trader has been told to be on stand-by at home,” said a spokesman for Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ in Tokyo, adding that “we would like to withhold further comment”.
Japan’s top selling Yomiuri Shimbun said that Britain’s financial regulators were interviewing a male, non-Japanese employee who worked for the bank in London.
The banking giant had earlier suspended two other London-based traders in relation to their suspected involvement in the rate-rigging scandal while working for Dutch lender Rabobank.
The scandal saw Britain’s Barclays bank fined £290 million ($455 million) after admitting that it attempted to manipulate Libor and Euribor rates between 2005 and 2009.
Libor, or the London Interbank Offered Rate, is a flagship instrument used as an interest rate benchmark throughout the world, while Euribor is the eurozone equivalent.
The pair affect what banks, businesses and individuals pay to borrow money.
The United States and European Union are probing the scandal, which is threatening to draw in more banks and has called into question oversight in London, one of the world’s top financial centres.