Tom Hayes Libor trial: Broker 'was offered $100,000 to fix benchmark interest rate'


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The Independent Online

A City trader offered a broker a “humongous deal” as an incentive as he tried to manipulate the benchmark Libor interest rate, a court heard.

Tom Hayes, 35, promised to pay his contact up to $100,000 if he kept the Libor rate “as low as possible”, jurors at London’s Southwark Crown Court were told. The court heard that, in a telephone call in 2008, Mr Hayes told a broker: “I don’t care right – just get me any fucking trade which pays you basically, mate. If you keep fixes unchanged, I’ll do a humongous deal with you.

“If you keep it as low as possible, I can do that. I’ll, of course, support and pay you… 50,000 dollars, 100,000 dollars, whatever you want, all right? I’m a man of my word.”

Mukul Chawla QC, prosecuting, told the jury that Mr Hayes was becoming an “increasingly dominant force” within his market by May 2008 and that a rival bank, Goldman Sachs, tried to recruit him.

“He was offered quite a lot of money but UBS [his employer] wanted to hold on to him,” the court heard. To persuade him to stay UBS offered him target-related pay for 2008 of ¥269m (£1.29m). The financial crisis meant he did not receive that amount, the court was told.

The jury has previously been told that Mr Hayes left UBS in September 2009 and joined the American bank Citigroup. Mr Hayes, of Fleet, Hampshire, denies eight counts of conspiracy to defraud between 2006 and 2010.