UPDATE 1-Rabobank says another top executive to step down
AMSTERDAM Nov 18 (Reuters) - Dutch lender Rabobank , which was fined $1 billion for rigging benchmark interest rates, said that another of its top executives will leave in the aftermath of the scandal because the cooperative bank's members no longer support him.
Sipko Schat, who is responsible for Rabobank International's wholesale clients division, is stepping down from the executive board with immediate effect and will leave the bank once the terms of his departure have been agreed, Rabobank said on Monday.
Schat, who had spent most of the past 30 years of his career at Rabobank, was not immediately reachable for comment.
Rabobank's chief executive, Piet Moerland, quit on Oct. 29 when U.S. and European regulators announced details of the fine for manipulating the London Interbank Offered Rate (Libor) and its Euribor cousin, the benchmarks for more than $300 trillion of financial assets.
A statement from Wout Dekker, chairman of Rabobank's supervisory board, acknowledged that regulators in the United States, Britain and the Netherlands found no evidence that the bank's executive management had been involved in influencing Libor and Euribor submissions or in attempts to do so.
The reason for Schat's departure, Dekker added, is that "it has recently become apparent that there is insufficient support from the local member banks for him staying".
Rabobank has said it is committed to "learning the lessons of the past" and has tightened systems and controls. The board had voluntarily forfeited remuneration worth a total of 2 million euros ($2.7 million).
However, the bank remains under considerable pressure from the Dutch finance minister, Jeroen Dijsselbloem, who wants those responsible for the rate rigging to face prosecution.
Of the 30 staff involved in rigging rates, 10 had already left the bank, five were fired with a sixth case pending, and 14 have been disciplined, Schat told Reuters last month.
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