The United States Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) are investigating at least 10 big banks for an alleged price-fixing scam involving precious metals, reported Reuters.
HSBC, Bank of Nova Scotia, Barclays Plc, Credit Suisse Group AG, Deutsche Bank AG, Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan Chase, Societe Generale, Standard Bank Group Ltd, and UBS are all under investigation for allegedly fixing the prices of gold, silver, platinum, and palladium in London.
HSBC, which was implicated in a massive tax evasion scam in recent months, was subpoenaed by the CFTC last month regarding its precious metals trading. The DOJ also requested documents “related to the bank’s antitrust investigation it is conducting in relation to precious metals.”
According to Reuters:
HSBC was one of several banks named in lawsuits filed in U.S. courts last year alleging a conspiracy to manipulate gold, silver, platinum and palladium prices, as well as precious metals derivatives, during the daily precious metals fixes.
Banks set the standard price for precious metals twice a day, over the phone. However, as Reuters reported, some gold traders said they were harmed by a price manipulation scheme.
This is a huge crime on part of the banks. But with the DOJ’s shaky history with actually bringing charges against Wall Street criminals, how likely is it that there will be justice? The DOJ needs to quit playing games with these banks and act.