LONDON Feb 5 The global head of foreign
exchange at Citigroup, the world's second largest currency
trader, is leaving the bank, according to an internal bank memo
seen by Reuters on Wednesday.
London-based Anil Prasad's departure, however, is not
related to the global investigation into allegations of currency
market manipulation, a source familiar with the matter said.
"Anil's decision is his own and entirely unrelated to the
on-going FX investigations," the source said.
Citi sees 14.9 percent of the average $5.3 trillion that
flows through the world currency markets every day, according to
the last annual poll by Euromoney, just behind market leader
Deutsche Bank AG which sees 15.2 percent.
Prasad joined Citi in India in 1986 and relocated to New
York two years later. In 1996, he moved to London but left the
bank the following year to join Natwest Capital Markets.
He returned to Citi in 2000, and was appointed Global Head
of Foreign Exchange & Local Markets in February 2007. His
successor will be announced in the coming weeks.
Prasad's departure comes as the FX probe appears to be
Last month, Citi fired its London-based head of European
spot foreign exchange trading, Rohan Ramchandani, following a
prolonged period on leave.
On Tuesday Deutsche Bank fired three New York-based currency
traders, and Britain's Lloyds Banking Group suspended
one of its FX traders in London after an internal investigation
into allegations of FX manipulation, sources said.
Also on Tuesday, the head of Britain's top regulator said
the allegations of FX manipulation were "every bit as bad" as
those surrounding the Libor interest rate scandal.
"We are still in the investigation phase ... The allegations
are every bit as bad as they have been with Libor," Martin
Wheatley, chief executive of the Financial Conduct Authority,
told UK lawmakers.
"I would be surprised if we got to conclusions within this
year. I hope that we will next year," he said.
Banks including Barclays and UBS have
been fined $6 billion for rigging Libor and other benchmark
interest rates, and some of the same banks are cooperating with
regulators in the forex probe.