May 23, 2016 (Washington, DC) – Today, a three-judge panel of the Second Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that the lower court erred in its March 29, 2013 decision dismissing antitrust claims filed against sixteen defendant banks alleged to have conspired to suppress the U.S. Dollar London Interbank Offered Rate (“LIBOR”). The case is In re LIBOR-Based Financial Instruments Antitrust Litigation 13-3565, in which Hausfeld and Susman Godfrey LLP serve as co-lead counsel on behalf of the plaintiffs that purchased over-the-counter financial instruments from the defendants that had payment terms tied to LIBOR.
In commenting on today’s victory for the plaintiffs, Michael Hausfeld, Chairman of Hausfeld, stated, “The Second Circuit’s decision today in the LIBOR litigation is a major, long-awaited vindication of fundamental antitrust principles. It is also a roadmap for all other similar matters involving benchmark rate fixing.”
Hausfeld, a global claimants’ law firm dedicated to handling complex litigation, initially brought the lawsuit in 2011. This lawsuit was filed on the heels of worldwide investigations by at least ten different governmental regulators, including in the United States, Switzerland, Japan, United Kingdom, Canada, the European Union, and Singapore, into banks’ conduct in the setting of LIBOR. While these investigations remain ongoing, government regulators have collected over $6 billion in fines from LIBOR-setting banks to date.
On March 29, 2013, the lower court dismissed the plaintiffs federal antitrust claims because they had not sufficiently alleged antitrust injury flowing from harm to competition. The Second Circuit vacated that decision today, finding that the plaintiffs’ had sufficiently alleged antitrust injury and remanding for further proceedings consistent with its opinion. The Second Circuit also held that the plaintiffs had plausibly alleged that all sixteen defendant banks had engaged in a horizontal price fixing agreement, a per se violation of the Sherman Antitrust Act.
The defendant banks are: Credit Suisse Group AG; Bank of America Corporation; Bank of America, N.A.; JP Morgan Chase & Co.; JP Morgan Chase Bank, N.A; HSBC Holdings plc; HSBC Bank plc; Barclays Bank plc; Lloyds Banking Group plc; WestLB AG; Westdeutsche Immobilienbank AG; UBS AG; The Royal Bank of Scotland Group plc; Deutsche Bank AG; Citibank NA; Citigroup Inc.; Coöperatieve Centrale Raiffeisen Boerenleenbank B.A.; The Norinchukin Bank; The Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ, Ltd.; HBOS plc; and Royal Bank of Canada. The case is pending before the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York.
Hausfeld attorneys working on this case include Michael Hausfeld, William Butterfield, Hilary Scherrer, Nathaniel Giddings and Gary Smith.
Hausfeld is a leading global law firm with offices in Berlin, Brussels, London, New York, Philadelphia, San Francisco, and Washington, DC. The firm has a broad range of complex litigation expertise, particularly in antitrust/competition, financial services, sports and entertainment, environmental, mass torts, consumer protection, and human rights matters, often with an international dimension. Hausfeld aims to achieve the best possible results for clients through its practical and commercial approach, avoiding litigation where feasible, yet litigating robustly when necessary. Hausfeld’s extensive experience with alternative and innovative fee models offers clients a diverse menu of engagement options and maximum flexibility in terms of managing their cost exposure. Hausfeld is the only claimants’ firm to be ranked by the Legal 500 and Chambers & Partners as a top tier firm in private enforcement of antitrust/competition law in both the United States and the United Kingdom.
For more information about the firm, including recent trial victories and landmark settlements, please visit www.hausfeld.com.