JOHANNESBURG, South Africa (AFP) – South Africa’s competition watchdog said yesterday it had filed new charges against 23 local and international banks for alleged foreign currency pricing.
The Competition Commission said in a statement that it “has filed a competition leaflet for a new prosecution sheet … against 28 banks accused of manipulating currency pairs / USD / ZAR”.
The case goes back several years.
Following other investigations around the world sparked by suspicion that banks were conspiring to manipulate foreign exchange prices to favor their own interests, the South African antitrust agency launched its own probe in 2015.
The Commission said it “found that the banks were directly and indirectly manipulating the USD / ZAR currency pair with respect to bids, offering … the spot rate …”.
In 2017, it filed a complaint against the banks that included Citigroup, Barclays, JPMorgan Chase and Standard Chartered.
Banks filed an appeal arguing that the South African Competition Court did not have jurisdiction to prosecute them.
The appeal was dismissed in February this year.
“These charges will not go away,” said Tembinkosi Bonakele of the Competition Committee.
“It is the responsibility of the South African authorities to get to the bottom of these serious allegations of manipulation of our currency wherever it took place,” he said.
Now you can read Jamaica Observer ePaper anytime, anywhere. Jamaica Observer ePaper is available to you at home or at work, and is the same version as the print copy available on http://bit.ly/epaperlive