Senators call for more vigorous Libor probe

WASHINGTON Thu Jul 12, 2012 6:21pm EDT

U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder attends a picnic for Members of Congress, hosted by U.S. President Barack Obama, on the South Lawn of the White House in Washington June 27, 2012. REUTERS/Larry Downing

U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder attends a picnic for Members of Congress, hosted by U.S. President Barack Obama, on the South Lawn of the White House in Washington June 27, 2012.

Credit: Reuters/Larry Downing

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A group of Democratic senators on Thursday pressured Attorney General Eric Holder and financial regulators to step up investigations into whether global banks manipulated benchmark interest rates.

The senators, including Carl Levin, Jack Reed and Dianne Feinstein, said investigators should also look into allegations that U.S. and foreign bank regulators may have been aware for years of wrongdoing in the setting of the London Interbank Offered Rate, or LIBOR.

"Just like the banks and executives they oversee, regulators who were involved should be held to account for any failures to stop wrongdoing that they knew, or should have known about," the senators said in a letter dated Thursday to Holder, Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner and members of the Financial Stability Oversight Council.

(Reporting By Karey Wutkowski)