Bank of England suspends staff member amid forex probe

Bank has warned forex rigging scandal could be 'every bit as bad' as Libor

The Bank of England has suspended a member of staff as it stepped up the pace of its review into whether it knew of or even condoned alleged rigging of the multi-trillion-dollar-a-day foreign exchange market.

The highly unusual suspension of one of the Bank’s own staff will inevitably lead to suspicions that at least somewhere within the central bank there was knowledge or, at least, worries over the foreign exchange market.

Martin Wheatley, chief executive of the Financial Conduct Authority, has already warned that the forex rigging scandal could be "every bit as bad" as the Libor rigging one. At least 15 banks are under investigation by regulators worldwide over forex rigging claims.

The Bank, under Governor Mark Carney, started an internal review into allegations its officials "condoned or were informed of manipulation in  the foreign exchange market or the sharing of confidential client information" in December.

Traders have alleged the Bank was told almost two years ago that they regularly exchanged information on the size of their clients’ orders before fixing exchange rates. They claim they were told by Bank officials there was nothing inappropriate in doing this.

The Bank has now asked an oversight committee of the Court of Directors to investigate officials’ roles and behaviour, and the committee has brought in law firm Travers Smith to prepare a report which will be made public.

The Bank said: “This extensive review of documents, emails and other records has to date found no evidence that Bank of England staff colluded in any way in manipulating the foreign exchange market or in sharing confidential client information.”

The Bank said it had already examined 15,000 emails, 21,000 Bloomberg and Reuters chatroom records and more than 40 hours of telephone call recordings in its review.

As part of today’s escalation of the forex investigation the Bank said it has “re-iterated its guidance to staff regarding management of records and escalation of important information. Those policies have been updated in recent months”.

It added that it "requires its staff to follow rigorous internal control processes”, and it had suspended the employee “pending investigation by the Bank into compliance with those processes."

The Bank said it had not taken any decision to discipline any member of staff, and emphasised that it is working closely with the FCA.  Deputy Governor Andrew Bailey told MPs last month that the Bank did not condone any kind of market manipulation.

Read more: Andrew Bailey denies Bank of England knew of forex market manipulation
Bank of England ‘knew traders were sharing data with rivals’  
Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
PROMOTED VIDEO
ebooks
ebooksA special investigation by Andy McSmith
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Money & Business

Recruitment Genius: Software Development Manager

£40000 - £50000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...

Ashdown Group: Product Manager - (Product Marketing, Financial Services)

£30000 - £35000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: Marketing Manager - Marke...

Recruitment Genius: Compliance Assistant

£13000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This Pension Specialist was established ...

Ashdown Group: Market Research Executive

£23000 - £26000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: Market Research Executive...

Day In a Page

Isis hostage crisis: The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power

Isis hostage crisis

The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power, says Robert Fisk
Missing salvage expert who found $50m of sunken treasure before disappearing, tracked down at last

The runaway buccaneers and the ship full of gold

Salvage expert Tommy Thompson found sunken treasure worth millions. Then he vanished... until now
Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Maverick artist Grayson Perry backs our campaign
Assisted Dying Bill: I want to be able to decide about my own death - I want to have control of my life

Assisted Dying Bill: 'I want control of my life'

This week the Assisted Dying Bill is debated in the Lords. Virginia Ironside, who has already made plans for her own self-deliverance, argues that it's time we allowed people a humane, compassionate death
Move over, kale - cabbage is the new rising star

Cabbage is king again

Sophie Morris banishes thoughts of soggy school dinners and turns over a new leaf
11 best winter skin treats

Give your moisturiser a helping hand: 11 best winter skin treats

Get an extra boost of nourishment from one of these hard-working products
Paul Scholes column: The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him

Paul Scholes column

The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him
Frank Warren column: No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans

Frank Warren's Ringside

No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans
Isis hostage crisis: Militant group stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

Isis stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

The jihadis are being squeezed militarily and economically, but there is no sign of an implosion, says Patrick Cockburn
Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action

Virtual reality: Seeing is believing

Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action
Homeless Veterans appeal: MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’

Homeless Veterans appeal

MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’ to help
Larry David, Steve Coogan and other comedians share stories of depression in new documentary

Comedians share stories of depression

The director of the new documentary, Kevin Pollak, tells Jessica Barrett how he got them to talk
Has The Archers lost the plot with it's spicy storylines?

Has The Archers lost the plot?

A growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent over the rural soap's spicy storylines; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried, says Simon Kelner
English Heritage adds 14 post-war office buildings to its protected lists

14 office buildings added to protected lists

Christopher Beanland explores the underrated appeal of these palaces of pen-pushing
Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Scientists unearthed the cranial fragments from Manot Cave in West Galilee