Euro Interbank Offered Rate

European Commission Implementing Regulation Establishing a List of Critical Benchmarks Used in Financial Markets under Benchmarks Regulation in OJ


On August 12, 2016, the European Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) 2016/1368 establishing a list of critical benchmarks used in financial markets pursuant to the Regulation on indices used as benchmarks in financial instruments and financial contracts or to measure the performance of investment funds (2016/1011/EU) (Benchmarks Regulation), was published in the Official Journal of the EU (OJ).

The Regulation highlights that benchmarks play an important role in the determination of the price of many financial instruments and financial contracts and of the measurement of performance for many investment funds. In order to fulfill their economic role, benchmarks need to be representative of the underlying market or economic reality they reflect. Should a benchmark no longer be representative of an underlying market, such as interbank offered rates, there is a risk of negative effects on, inter alia, market integrity, the financing of households (loans and mortgages) and businesses in the Union.

The Implementing Regulation, which specifies the Euro Interbank Offered Rate (EURIBOR) as a critical benchmark, enters into force on the day following its publication in the OJ (that is, August 13, 2016). It will apply from January 1, 2018.

FSA Fines Barclays £59.5 Million for Manipulation of LIBOR

On 27 June 2012, the FSA published the final notice issued to Barclays Bank plc, detailing a £59.5 million fine for misconduct relating to its submission of rates that formed part of the London Interbank Offered Rate (“LIBOR”) and the Euro Interbank Offered Rate (“EURIBOR”). This is the largest ever fine that the FSA has imposed. Final Notice.

In particular, Barclays breached the following Principles:

  • Principle 5 (market conduct) – Barclays was found to have breach Principle 5 by making US dollar LIBOR and EURIBOR submissions that took into account requests made by interest rate derivatives traders.
  • Principle 3 (management and control) – Barclays did not have adequate risk management systems or effective controls in place relating to its LIBOR and EURIBOR submission process.
  • Principle 2 (skill, care and diligence) – Barclays failed to conduct its business with due skill, care and diligence when considering issues raised internally relating to its LIBOR submissions.

In addition to the fine by the FSA, the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission fined Barclays $200 million, and Barclays agreed to pay a penalty of $160 million as part of an agreement with the U.S. Department of Justice.

The Barclays settlement is the first settlement announced in connection with the LIBOR probe, with regulators investigating more than 20 banks.