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On December 7, New York Supreme Court Justice Eileen Bransten dismissed a $500 million lawsuit against UBS AG (“UBS”) brought by Ace Decade Holdings Limited (“Ace Decade”), a British Virgin Islands company, for lack of personal jurisdiction and forum non conveniens.  Ace Decade alleged that UBS fraudulently induced it to invest in shares of a company publicly traded in Hong Kong through a UBS-affiliated intermediary in Hong Kong, an affiliation that UBS concealed.  Ace Decade’s…
On November 4, the New York State Department of Financial Services (“DFS”) and the Agricultural Bank of China agreed to a Consent Order requiring the bank to pay a $215 million penalty and to install an independent monitor to review the bank’s program for compliance with anti-money laundering laws (“AML”), including the Bank Secrecy Act (“BSA”). The Agricultural Bank of China’s New York Branch (the “Branch”) conducts U.S. dollar clearing in large volumes through foreign…
On August 8, Barclays Bank PLC and Barclays Capital Inc. (collectively “Barclays”) reached a $100 million settlement to resolve a 44-state multistate investigation that exposed Barclays’ fraudulent and anticompetitive schemes to manipulate the London Interbank Offered Rate (“LIBOR”) from 2005 to 2009.  The investigation, led by Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman of New York and Attorney General George Jepsen of Connecticut, revealed that Barclays’ managers instructed LIBOR rate submitters to artificially lower their LIBOR submissions…
On July 7, the Southwark Crown Court in London sentenced four former Barclays traders to prison sentences, ranging from just under three years to six and a half years, for their involvement in a conspiracy to manipulate the London InterBank Offered Rate (“LIBOR”) between 2005 and 2007.  This trial was the third in Britain to focus on the global manipulation scandal. The four traders, Peter Johnson, Jonathan Mathew, Jay Merchant, and Alex Pabon, and their…
Two former Deutsche Bank traders accused of manipulating the London InterBank Offered Rate (“LIBOR”) were indicted by the Department of Justice (“DOJ”) on June 2, 2016. Dubbed “the world’s most important number,” LIBOR is a benchmark for global short-term interest rates that underpins trillions of dollars in mortgages and other debt. The case against the two indicted individuals, Matthew Connolly and Gavin Campbell Black, occurs more than a year after Deutsche Bank resolved its role…
On May 23, 2016, the Second Circuit Court of Appeals vacated a judgment which dismissed antitrust claims against 16 big banks.  The plaintiffs’ claims arose from the alleged manipulation of what has been called “the world’s most important number”—the London InterBank Offered Rate (“LIBOR”), a primary benchmark for global short-term interest rates.  According to the plaintiffs, the defendants, who are members of a panel assembled by a bank trade association to calculate a daily interest…
On April 19, Lehman Brothers Special Financing (“LBSF”), a subsidiary of Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. (“LBHI”), filed its opposition to a motion to dismiss its breach-of-contract claims related to the Pyxis transaction, one of many credit-default swap (“CDS”) transactions that were terminated as a result of LBHI’s bankruptcy. LBSF argued that the cancellation of its priority payment status under the swap agreements was a breach of contract and violated bankruptcy law. After LBHI initiated a…
On March 14, almost six months after Volkswagen AG (“VW”) admitted to installing software in its diesel vehicles to cheat emissions testing, VW was hit with a $3.6 billion lawsuit in Germany.  The case was filed in Braunschweig on behalf of 278 institutional investors, including investors from Australia, Austria, Canada, Denmark, France, Italy, Japan, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, the U.K., and the U.S.  Investors claim that the German automaker took too long…
Royal Park Investments SA/NV (“Royal Park”), a Belgian investment fund, filed a class action on behalf of itself and similarly situated investors against Bank of New York Mellon Corporation (“BNYM”).  The complaint alleged that BNYM breached its obligations as a trustee of $1.12 billion in residential mortgage-backed securities (“RMBS”) when it failed to cure, substitute, and repurchase loans that did not comply with representations and warranties (“R&Ws”) contained in its governing documents, and more generally,…
Goldman Sachs announced yesterday that it has agreed in principle to a $5.06 billion settlement with the U.S. Department of Justice (“DOJ”), which would resolve claims stemming from several state and federal investigations concerning the investment banking giant’s underwriting and sale of residential mortgage-backed securities (“RMBS”) from 2005 to 2007.  To date, the DOJ has reached similar settlements with JPMorgan Chase & Co., Citigroup Inc., Bank of America Corp., and Morgan Stanley.  According to the…