November 12, 2014 / 6:52 AM / 5 years ago

REACTIONS 1-Banks fined after foreign exchange probe

LONDON, Nov 12 (Reuters) - Five of the world’s biggest banks will pay almost $3.4 billion in penalties to British, U.S. and Swiss authorities for alleged manipulation of foreign exchange rates.

Here are reactions to the fines.

GEORGE OSBORNE, UK FINANCE MINISTER: “Today we take tough action to clean up corruption by a few so that we have a financial system that works for everyone. It’s part of a long term plan that is fixing what went wrong in Britain’s banks and our economy. “A number of traders have been suspended or fired, and the Serious Fraud Office are conducting criminal investigations. The banks that employed them face big fines - and I will ensure that these fines are used for the wider public good.” MARTIN WHEATLEY, CHIEF EXECUTIVE OF FINANCIAL CONDUCT AUTHORITY “The FCA does not tolerate conduct which imperils market integrity or the wider UK financial system.

“Today’s record fines mark the gravity of the failings we found and firms need to take responsibility for putting it right. They must make sure their traders do not game the system to boost profits or leave the ethics of their conduct to compliance to worry about. Senior management commitments to change need to become a reality in every area of their business.”

PHILIP HAMPTON, RBS CHAIRMAN “Today is a stark reminder of the importance of culture and integrity in banking and we will rightly be judged on the strength of our response.

“We have analysed millions of documents and are reviewing the conduct of over 50 current and former members of trading staff around the world as well as dozens of supervisors and senior management responsible and accountable for this business.

“As part of that process, we have already placed six individuals into a disciplinary process, three of whom are currently suspended, pending further investigation.”

Compiled by Matt Scuffham; Editing by Clare Hutchison

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