European Union competition regulators have accused Europe’s biggest bank HSBC, its US peer JPMorgan and France’s Credit Agricole of rigging financial benchmarks linked to the euro.
Brussels is also planning to bring charges against ICAP, the world’s largest interdealer broker, for suspected manipulation of the Libor financial benchmark involving the Japanese yen.
So far regulators in Europe and the US have fined 10 banks and brokerages a total of 4.4 billion euros for rigging the London and European interbank rates which, among other things, set interest rates for loans.
Prosecutors have also charged 16 people with fraud-related offences.
HSBC, JPMorgan and ICAP deny all wrongdoing. Credit Agricole said it would respond after seeing the charges.
If found guilty they could be fined up to 10 percent of their global turnover.
In December a record 1.7-billion-euro fine was levied on six banks including Deutsche Bank, Royal Bank of Scotland and Citigroup for similar offences. The lenders settled their charges and received a 10-percent reduction in their fines.