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Swiss regulator probes banks over potential gold and silver manipulation

Duncan Richardson, News Editor
28 Sep 2015, 3:42 p.m.

Swiss regulators are to investigate Barclays Bank, HSBC, Deutsche Bank, Morgan Stanley, Mitsui Bank and two Swiss based banks over potential manipulation of the precious metals markets.

The Swiss Competition Commission (COMCO) said the financial institutions under suspicion potentially colluded with each other to rig the gold, silver and platinum markets. COMCO indicated there is evidence banks may have worked together to manipulate prices, namely the bid offer spread.

The investigation is expected to conclude in 2017 and if found guilty the maximum penalty the banks could face is a fine.

The European antitrust regulator is also conducting their own investigation after a U.S. probe suggested the same banks had been manipulating the precious metals markets. The EU investigation is focusing on potential anti-competitive behaviour in regards spot trading

In May, UBS was given immunity by the U.S. Justice Department investigations into precious metals manipulation after blowing the whistle on a number of financial institutions

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