Banks fined for colluding on currency swap deals

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Banks fined for colluding on currency swap deals

Korea’s antitrust watchdog said Wednesday that it has fined four foreign banks a combined 1.32 billion won ($1.1 million) for colluding on bids for currency swap deals with local firms.

The Fair Trade Commission said the four banks - Citibank Korea, HSBC, Credit Agricole Corporate and Investment Bank and JPMorgan Chase - colluded to rig four currency swap bids between January and September 2010.

Korean companies involved in the currency swap deals include the state-run Korea Hydro & Nuclear Power and Korea Expressway Corporation, the operator of the country’s highways.

A currency swap is an arrangement in which two parties exchange a specified amount of different currencies at an agreed future time.

Citibank Korea was slapped with the largest penalty, fined 900 million won. HSBC was fined 387 million won and Credit Agricole Corporate and Investment Bank was fined 34 million won.

JPMorgan Chase was given only a correction order.


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