Foreign Exchange Antitrust Class Action Settlement
Direct Settlement Class: All Persons who, between January 1, 2003 and December 15, 2015 entered into an FX Instrument directly with a Defendant, a direct or indirect parent, subsidiary, or division of a Defendant, a Released Party, or co-conspirator where such Persons were either domiciled in the United States or its territories or, if domiciled outside the United States or its territories, transacted FX Instruments in the United States or its territories.
Exchange-Only Settlement Class:All Persons who, between January 1, 2003 and December 15, 2015 entered into FX Exchange-Traded Instruments where such Persons were either domiciled in the United States or its territories or, if domiciled outside the United States or its territories, entered into FX Exchange-Traded Instruments on a U.S. exchange.
This is the list of settling defendants
- Bank of America Corporation, Bank of America, N.A., and Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith Incorporated (“Bank of America”);
- The Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ, Ltd. (“BTMU”);
- Barclays Bank PLC and Barclays Capital Inc. (“Barclays”);
- BNP Paribas Group, BNP Paribas North America Inc., BNP Paribas Securities Corp., and BNP Prime Brokerage, Inc. (“BNP Paribas”);
- Citigroup Inc., Citibank, N.A., Citicorp, and Citigroup Global Markets Inc. (“Citigroup”);
- Deutsche Bank AG and Deutsche Bank Securities Inc. (“Deutsche Bank”);
- The Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. and Goldman, Sachs & Co. (“Goldman Sachs”);
- HSBC Holdings PLC, HSBC Bank PLC, HSBC North America Holdings Inc., HSBC Bank USA, N.A., and HSBC Securities (USA) Inc. (“HSBC”);
- JPMorgan Chase & Co. and JPMorgan Chase Bank, N.A. (“JPMorgan”);
- Morgan Stanley, Morgan Stanley & Co. LLC, and Morgan Stanley & Co. International PLC (“Morgan Stanley”);
- RBC Capital Markets LLC (“RBC”);
- The Royal Bank of Scotland Group PLC, The Royal Bank of Scotland PLC, and RBS Securities Inc. (“RBS”);
- Societe Generale (“Soc Gen”);
- Standard Chartered Bank (“Standard Chartered”); and
- UBS AG, UBS Group AG, and UBS Securities LLC (“UBS”).
Under the Plan of Distribution, the Claims Administrator will first determine Class Members’ eligible transaction volume in various FX products, such as FX spot transactions, FX forwards, FX swaps, OTC FX options, FX futures, and options on FX futures (“Settlement Transaction Volume”). Then, a model that estimates claim value to Class Members relative to one another will be applied. The model applies weightings to certain trade characteristics, such as currency pair and trade size, to generate the amount of each Claimant’s potential claim (“Eligible Participation Amount”).
Proof of Purchase
n re Foreign Exchange Benchmark Rates Antitrust Litigation,Case No. 13-cv-7789 United States District Court for the Southern District of New York.
Generally, Class Plaintiffs allege that Defendants conspired to fix prices in the FX market in violation of Sections 1 and 3 of the Sherman Antitrust Act, 15 U.S.C. §§1, 3, and that Defendants manipulated the FX market in violation of the Commodity Exchange Act, 7 U.S.C. §§1, et seq. Class Plaintiffs allege that this conduct was carried out through a number of different means.
Class Plaintiffs allege that Defendants conspired to fix FX Benchmark Rates paid by members of the Settlement Classes. FX Benchmark Rates are rates that are published at certain times during the day and are prices at which Defendants offered to, and did, transact with members of the Settlement Classes. The most widely used of the FX Benchmark Rates are the WM/Reuters Closing Spot Rates, which, for the most widely traded currency pairs, were set at 4:00 p.m. London time using the median price of actual trades executed in the market on certain venues between 3:59:30 p.m. and 4:00:30 p.m. London time. Class Plaintiffs allege Defendants shared confidential order and trade information to coordinate their trading positions and trading strategy to manipulate and fix the FX Benchmark Rates.
Class Plaintiffs allege that Defendants conspired to fix the spreads that Defendants quoted to members of the Settlement Classes. As described in the Third Consolidated Amended Class Action Complaint (“Complaint”), spreads are the difference between the rate at which a Defendant indicated it would buy a currency and the rate at which a Defendant would sell a currency. Class Plaintiffs allege that Defendants discussed and agreed upon spreads through communications in chat rooms and other means. The alleged conspiracy to fix spreads is alleged to have reduced competition in the FX market and artificially increased the spread, with the result that Defendants bought currency at a lower price than they would have absent the alleged conspiracy, sold currency at a higher price than they would have absent the alleged conspiracy, and quoted less competitive spreads than they would have absent the alleged collusion.
Class Plaintiffs also allege that Defendants conspired to attempt to trigger clients’ stop loss and limit orders, work client limit orders at levels better than the limit order price, front-run client orders, and further fix prices by “banging the close” (i.e., breaking up large client orders into small trades immediately before and during the setting of FX Benchmark Rates), “painting the screen,” and engaging in other tactics as alleged in the Complaint.Class Plaintiffs allege that, as a result of this conduct, members of the Settlement Classes paid supra-competitive prices for FX transactions. Defendants deny Class Plaintiffs’ allegations of wrongdoing.