Citibank fined almost R70m for colluding to fix currency #BanksCollusion
The Competition Commission announced the settlement of R69 500 860 on Monday, which was filed with the Competition Tribunal.
The Commission found that from at least 2007, Citibank and its competitors had a general agreement to collude on prices for bids, offers and bid-offer spreads for the spot trades in relation to currency trading involving US dollar/rand currency pair.
This figure does not exceed 10% of Citibank annual turnover in South Africa.
Citibank undertook to cooperate with the Commission and avail witnesses to assist the prosecution of the other banks that colluded in this matter.
It's a penalty fine - essentially a plea bargain - which is to turn Citibank into our witness. It's 4% of their turnover in South Africa. We insisted on an admission and are happy that they'll fully disclose to us and testify truthfully before the Tribunal.Tembinkosi Bonakele, Commissioner for the Competition Commission
Of the 17 banks, Absa was the first to approach the Commission when it started its investigation. It is not facing a fine as it has cooperated.
Already Absa has assisted us a great deal. These are very complex investigations and prosecutions because you do need assistance from those who have been part of it, who can explain movements that were done on the trading platform.Tembinkosi Bonakele, Commissioner for the Competition Commission
Take a listen to Kieno Kammies talk to Tembinkosi Bonakele from the Competition Commission: