Government now extends its powers to prosecute Libor rigging to seven primary benchmarks including the foreign exchange market.

Traders who are attempting to make changes on the foreign exchange, gold and oil benchmarks will be facing up to seven hard years in prison under new laws to tackle market abuse.

It was announced last week that the government will begin extending its legislation covering Libor to seven other benchmarks including the WM/Reuters London Fix which is the present dominating global benchmark in the $5.3 trillion-a-day currency market along with the ISDAFix for the current swap rates.

The legislation likewise covers the LMBA Silver Price and the London Gold Fixing which determine the price of the precious metals circulating in the London Market.

Reliability matters to the economy of the U.K, by ensuring that the key rates are underpinning the financial markets from a global standpoint are robust and anyone who are seeking to alter them will be facing the full force and effect of the criminal justice.

This is precisely the reason why the government is so determined to deal with the alleged abuses, tackle the undesirable behaviour of the few and make sure that the markets are fair for the majority who depend on them.

Last year alone, the government commenced the unlimited fines and prison sentences up to seven years for the act of making forged or deceptive statements regarding the London Interbank Offered Rate (Libor) which is a flagship benchmark that affects what financial institutions, individuals and businesses that actually pay money.

The laws which are expected to be enforced next year, follow a consultation by the Treasury by September of next year. Moreover, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), which is primarily tasked with keeping an eye in the city will be publishing the final set of policies in the coming months.

The legislation is steadfast in its support of the Fraud Act wherein convicted criminals will be facing a maxim prison sentence of 10 years if found guilty of the said criminal act.

This coming summer, the Government will be launching the Fair and Effective Markets Review, a shared evaluation by the Treasury, the Bank of England along with the FCA aimed at re-establishing trust in the aftermath of several instances of rate-rigging scandals.

The Bank is now conducting a nine-month consultation with the international regulators and several market participants who are aiming to fend off the criminal acts while still preserving Britain’s position as a global financial centre. The consultation will be focused more on the Fixed Income, Currency and Commodities Trading.

Finally, the Serious Fraud Office finally confirmed last week that a London banker had recently been arrested in what was believed to be the very first arrest in relation to the criminal investigation into the anomalous foreign exchange rigging.