FRANKFURT Oct 18 The German financial markets
regulator, BaFin, wants to speak to a former Deutsche Bank
trader as part of its probe into possible
manipulation of the Libor benchmark interest rate, a source
familiar with the matter said on Friday.
The move by BaFin, which found no wrongdoing at Deutsche's
management after a year investigating its role in the Libor
affair, follows a successful lawsuit by four Euribor and Libor
traders last month against the bank.
BaFin, Deutsche Bank and the trader, Christian Bittar, who
has left Deutsche and was contacted in Singapore, all declined
Deutsche Bank has said it is talking to authorities in the
United States and Europe investigating the setting of London and
European interbank offered rates, interest rate benchmarks known
as Libor and Euribor, between 2005 and 2011. Libor is used as a
reference benchmark to price billions of euros' worth of
BaFin handed over a report of its findings on Deutsche in
August, but said at the time that it would continue the
investigation if new facts came to light. The news magazine Der
Spiegel reported last month that BaFin was examining the court
decision in favour of the former traders.
Deutsche had fired the four traders, who did not include
Bittar, after discovering that some staff appeared to have been
willing to consider the bank's own trading positions when they
submitted their estimates for the Euribor and Libor rates.
The court in Frankfurt ruled that they had been dismissed
unfairly, and said Deutsche had failed to implement sufficient
controls to prevent different arms of its investment bank from
talking to each other.
Deutsche, Germany's largest lender by market value, says it
has made some provisions to cover the costs of investigations
into benchmark interest rates, and that there is no sign that
senior management behaved inappropriately.
Britain and the United States fined Britain's Barclays Bank
a record $450 million last year for fixing rates during
the credit crunch.
Britain's financial regulator said on Friday it had "no
current plans" to launch a new investigation into that case,
following new evidence disclosed in court filings on Thursday.