UBS settles class action lawsuit for FX manipulation – pays $135 million

Switzerland’s largest bank, UBS AG (SWX:UBSN), has agreed to pay $135 million to settle a class action law suit which was brought against UBS by pension funds and other investors that engaged in FX transactions with the bank.

This represents the settlement of just one of the ongoing allegations against several major banks for currency rate manipulation which has been instigated in addition to the payment of a combined $4.3 billion to Swiss, US and British regulators by six large banks in November last year.

The same investors which instigated the class action lawsuit reached a settlement in January with one of the other banks, JPMorgan Chase & Co. (NYSE:JPM), for $99.5 million, and as with the settlement with JP Morgan, the settlement with UBS includes an agreement to cooperate and provide information to the investors’ attorneys as they pursue their cases against the other 10 banks which are party to the class action lawsuit.

The provision for settlement of the lawsuit was detailed UBS’ annual report for 2014 which was issued on Friday March 13, detailing a revision of the bank’s profit downwards, and an increase in the CEO’s remuneration package.

UBS reduced its fourth-quarter profit by CHF105 million and boosted its litigation reserves to 3.05 billion Swiss francs ($3.03 billion).

According to a report by Reuters, the bank stated that “The principal change arose due to an increase in charges for provisions for litigation, regulatory and similar matters of 134 million francs.”

In its annual report, UBS stated that it had increased total pay for CEO Sergio Ermotti by about 4 percent to 11.16 million francs in 2014 from 10.73 million in 2013.

UBS shares edged 1 percent higher last year, compared with a 2.8 percent fall in the European sector .SX7P. The rationale behind this was a board decision to recognize Mr. Ermotti’s “sound leadership” and the bank’s “strong performance.”

Overall pay for the bank’s executive board fell to CHF80.06 million from CHF82.4 million in 2013, and the board’s membership declined to 10 people from 11.

For the official annual report from UBS, click here.

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