Westpac Denies BBSW Allegations

Westpac Banking Corporation has denied allegations in a US class action relating to trading in bank bill swap rates (BBSW), the bank said in a disclosure.

“Westpac denies the allegation in this claim and, if served with the claim, will defend those allegations vigorously.”

The bank said it is aware that a class action has been filed in New York against it and a large number of the Australian and international banks in respect of the Australian (BBSW) interest rate benchmark.

“Westpac has not been formally served with any proceedings.” the bank said.

“Westpac denies the allegation in this claim and, if served with the claim, will defend those allegations vigorously.”

The BBSW is the primary interest rate benchmark used in Australian financial markets to price home loans, credit cards and other financial products.

According to the claim in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York the banks “generated hundreds of millions of dollars in illicit profits by artificially fixing BBSW-based derivatives prices at levels that benefited their trading books”.

The applicants are Florida-based derivatives trader Richard Dennis and two US-based investment funds, Sonterra Capital Master Fund and Frontpoint Financial Services and some of its related funds. – BusinessNewsAsia.com

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