UBS says took action over electronic messaging by Singapore staff

ZURICH, Sept 17 (Reuters) - UBS said on Wednesday it had taken action against staff in Singapore for their use of electronic messaging, highlighting how banks have clamped down following probes into interest rate setting and foreign exchange trading.

The Swiss bank said a report on Swiss finance blog Inside Paradeplatz website that it had fired employees in Singapore for allegedly using individual and group WhatsApp messages to send sensitive documents to each other was inaccurate.

Zurich-based UBS said in a statement that no client data had been compromised and that none of its employees had been sacked.

“This is an internal matter that was self-discovered within UBS and the appropriate steps have been taken,” a spokeswoman for the bank said, without elaborating on what those steps were.

UBS is among banks being scrutinized after allegations that traders with advance knowledge of customer orders tried to manipulate benchmark foreign-exchange rates used to set the value of trillions of dollars of investments.

The global forex investigation and past scandals such as the rigging of benchmark of interest rates has led banks to clamp down on trading floor communications, including some bans on chat rooms. (Reporting By Katharina Bart; Editing by Crispian Balmer)