Deutsche Bank Made Huge Profit on Libor Bets

Bank, on whose advisory board sits Chuck Hagel, is also being investigated for Iran sanctions violations


Deutsche Bank, on whose board sits President Barack Obama’s secretary of defense nominee Chuck Hagel, made major profits in 2008 on bets related to the London interbank offer rate (Libor).

Deutsche Bank made at least $654 million in 2008 from trades pegged to the Libor currently being investigated by regulators, the Wall Street Journal reported.

The German bank’s trading profits resulted from billions of euros in bets related to the London interbank offered rate, or Libor, and other global benchmark rates.

Regulators have been investigating allegations that more than a dozen banks, including Deutsche Bank, rigged Libor and other interest rates underpinning trillions of dollars in loans and other financial contracts. …

So far, an internal inquiry by Deutsche Bank aimed at uncovering evidence of Libor manipulation has found misconduct by just a few individuals, people close to the bank said. As part of its cooperation with investigators, Deutsche Bank still is checking all the trades for any suspicious signs.

Regulators have alleged a conspiracy by global banks to rig interest rates, with some traders brazenly boasting about their prowess at moving the influential rates up or down at their whims. Libor is determined daily using bank-submitted estimates of how much it would cost the banks to borrow in different currencies and over different time periods.

The Free Beacon reported in December that Hagel sits on the board of Deutsch Bank. This is not the first time the bank has been investigated for shady dealings.

The bank is also under investigation for allegedly violating a United States trade embargo on Iran’s oil and energy sector, which is believed to play a key role in Tehran’s nuclear enrichment program.