Citigroup to pay $1.66bn to settle US FX investigations, class action

Announcements keep piling up over Forex settlements, with the latest such press release coming from US financial giant Citigroup Inc (NYSE:C). The company has reached settlements with the United States Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (Fed) to resolve investigations into its Forex business.

  • The settlement with the DOJ includes a guilty plea by Citicorp, a subsidiary of Citigroup Inc., to a violation of the Sherman Antitrust Act and fine of $925 million.
  • The settlement with the Fed includes the entry of a cease and desist order and a civil money penalty of $342 million.
  • Citi also announced that it has reached a separate agreement to settle related private U.S. class action claims for a payment of $394 million, which needs court approval to get into force.

Citi struck an upbeat note, saying it would maintain its licenses and that it does not anticipate a significant impact on its operations or ability to serve its clients. The payments required by each of the settlements Citi announced today will be covered by existing legal reserves and will affect earnings in the second quarter of 2015.

Michael Corbat, Chief Executive Officer of Citi, commented “The behavior that resulted in the settlements we announced today is an embarrassment to our firm, and stands in stark contrast to Citi’s values. We began to take action quickly after becoming aware of these violations of our Code of Conduct and policies, and our internal investigation has so far resulted in nine terminations and additional disciplinary actions.

“We will learn from this experience and continue building upon the changes that we have already made to our systems, controls, and monitoring processes. Fostering a culture of ethical behavior has been, and continues to be, a top priority for Citi,” Mr. Corbat added.

The latest announcements on Citi FX settlements come on the heels of a range of previous such settlements reached. In November 2014, Citi announced agreements to settle investigations into its foreign exchange business by the U.K. Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), the U.S. Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) and the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC).

To view the official announcement by Citi, click here.

Some pre-history to today’s settlements:

US Department of Justice wants guilty plea from Citigroup for FX manipulation.

Billions in fines for FX rigging imminent for four major banks.

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