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From: The Socialist issue 866, 5 August 2015: Stop NHS cuts

Search site for keywords: Fat cats - Banks - Trial - London - Nationalisation - Market - Interest rates

Fiddling finance capital in the dock

A judge's gavel, photo by Brian Turner (Creative Commons)

Photo by Brian Turner (Creative Commons)   (Click to enlarge)

The trial and conviction of former UBS and Citigroup trader, Tom Hayes, has revealed the huge scale of the 2012 Libor rate fixing scandal perpetrated by the major banks.

Many of these banks are also facing another tranche of hefty fines for fixing the Forex - the foreign exchange currency rates - for at least a decade.

Hayes appears to be the fall guy, taking the rap for banks who have been fined by UK and US authorities over the scandal. And while another eleven traders await trial, none of the banks' top fat cats have been charged.

Libor stands for the London Inter-Bank Offered Rate. It is an average interest rate calculated through submissions of interest rates by major banks in London.

The Libor prices the loans made to either building societies or commercial loans to small companies.

In attempting to fix the Libor rate, the banks rigged the market in its favour, making bigger profits.

It's clear that even when news of the scandal first surfaced the banks' traders continued their crooked dealings. The chances are that new dodgy dealings involving finance capital will be exposed in the coming years.

But while the Tory government will use Hayes' 14-year conviction as evidence of its 'get tough' approach to the banks, it ignores the only meaningful course of action to prevent these money grubbing parasites re-offending, ie the nationalisation of the banks, under democratic workers' control and management.

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Article dated 5 August 2015

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