RBS suspends FX trader, bringing total to three

LONDON Wed Feb 19, 2014 12:51pm GMT

A sign is seen outside a Royal Bank of Scotland building in central London January 28, 2014. REUTERS/Paul Hackett

A sign is seen outside a Royal Bank of Scotland building in central London January 28, 2014.

Credit: Reuters/Paul Hackett

(Reuters) – Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS.L) has suspended a senior currency trader in London, bringing to three the number of traders suspended by the bank since a global investigation into allegations of rigging reference exchange rates was launched last year.

Ian Drysdale was put on leave earlier this week and has now been suspended, a source familiar with the matter said.

This follows the suspension of Julian Munson and Paul Nash in October last year.

RBS declined to comment, and Drysdale could not be reached for comment.

On Tuesday RBS said it was reviewing rules on currency dealers trading with their own money.

The global probe into online communications between traders and allegations of manipulating benchmark currency rates known as “fixings” has seen more than 20 traders at many of the world’s biggest banks put on leave, suspended or fired.

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Another RBS trader suspended over foreign exchange rigging probe

As many as 20 foreign exchange traders at a handful of banks are thought to have been suspended as regulators investigate
Royal Bank of Scotland

Royal Bank of Scotland has paid $275m to settle a class action suit relating to the way it sold mortgage-based securities in 2008. Photograph Facundo Arrizabalaga/EPA

Another currency trader at Royal Bank of Scotland has been suspended as regulators around the world continue their investigation into potential rigging of the £3tn a day foreign exchange market.

The bank would not comment on reports that Ian Drysdale had been placed on leave earlier in the week and was now suspended, becoming the third RBS forex trader to be suspended.

RBS is just one of a handful of banks suspending or firing traders amid allegations that Martin Wheatley, the chief executive of the Financial Conduct Authority, has said are every bit as bad as those about Libor, the benchmark interest rate.

As many as 20 foreign exchange traders are thought to have been asked to stay away from their roles in banks around the world as a result of the investigations which are thought to be at the early stages.

The 81% taxpayer-owned bank is also continuing to take hits to clean up past issues, with a $275m (£165m) payout on Wednesday to settle a class action suit relating to the way it sold mortgage-based securities during the 2008 banking crisis.

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