Mise à jour : 17 septembre 2012 (Rédaction initiale : 8 septembre 2012 )

Sur le vif

On 5 September 2012, the French bank, Société Générale, said it was conducting an internal investigation and it is working with the U.S. authorities in the case of Libor


Libor is the rate set by the bank statements, anticipating purchases liquidity between them. The Libor rate is the result of self-regulation. On this rate, the financial system leans to fix rates many different financial transactions. However, now many banks are sued by authorities, for manipulation. The banks made false statement or organize a cartel, producing a rate in their favor. From the condemnation of the Barclays 26 June 2012 by the Financial Services Authority (FSA), the commencement of proceedings, the constitution of the Commission to think reform Libor estimated pernicious, banks choose their strategy. Most prefer to cooperate fully in themselves investigation leading home and helping the authorities. This was the case of the Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS). Today it is the case of Société Générale (SocGen).

© thejournalofregulation

The banking system is on trust. Banks are strong by their credibility.

However, the case Libor began very seriously dangerous for this credibility.

Indeed, since the Financial Services Authority (FSA) has condemned Barclays June 26, 2012 for manipulation, the king is naked: nothing is easier for a bank to manipulate Libor, because it is simple to lie.

Therefore, the suspicion is that it has done Barclays, all other banks have (had, because it had an interest to do so). From there, the system credibility of all banks is in danger.

The banks’ strategy may be to close the case by paying authorities. Some banks have done, but this is to reinforce the idea that the system Libor simply declarative, was pernicious and structurally non-genuine.

That is why, without camping on the legal principle of the presumption of innocence, or doing at the same time (as did the Royal Bank of Scotland August 26, 2012), banks cooperate immediately to save their credit trust.

On 5 September 2012, the President of the French bank Société Générale (SocGen), Frédéric Oudéa, has publicly stated (as it is essential that this be public, since confidence is restored vis-à-vis the public) , in the first place the bank cooperates with U.S. authorities investigating the case of Libor.

Secondly, he said that internally, he had set up an investigation to find any reprehensible behavior, that is to say manipulation.




Note that this statement was made in Frankfurt, during a press conference. We observe first that, as has been the leader of the RBS is in the press that the bank is trying to preserve its credibility with the public.


Secondly, we note that it is in the city of the European Central Bank, Frankfurt, the declaration is made. It is known that the behavior of central bankers have been implicated in the case of LIBOR, and the banks and the British Parliament. The place is symbolic here.

The President of the Société Générale said that it was the subject of any proceedings, or even any investigation by U.S. authorities. But it is important for the proper functioning of the bank justifies its approach. This will also protracted and expensive.

It is true that the strategy is primarily a matter of anticipation.

Moreover, it leaves open the question of the reform of the Libor itself as a system is structurally simple declarative incentive deviant farms. This is the opinion issued August 10, 2012 by the President of the Commission constituted by the British Government to think reform.



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