Extracts from the press conference by Joaquín Almunia, on cartels in the financial sector
On 4 December 2013, Joaquín Almunia, Vice-President of the EC in charge of Competition, gave a press conference at the European Commission in Brussels, Belgium, on cartels in the financial sector. The European Commission had fined 8 international financial institutions a total of €1 712 468 000 for participating in illegal cartels in markets for financial derivatives covering the European Economic Area (EEA).
Four of these institutions participated in a cartel relating to interest rate derivatives denominated in the euro currency. Six of them participated in one or more bilateral cartels relating to interest rate derivatives denominated in Japanese yen. Such collusion between competitors was prohibited by Article 101 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU) and Article 53 of the EEA Agreement.
Both decisions were adopted under the Commission's cartel settlement procedure; the companies' fines were reduced by 10% for agreeing to settle. PHOTO SHOTLIST