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Deutsche Bank, JPMorgan agree to settle yen-Libor lawsuits

[NEW YORK] Deutsche Bank AG and JPMorgan Chase & Co agreed to pay a combined US$148 million to resolve claims that they conspired to manipulate the benchmark yen Libor rate and said they will cooperate with investors suing other banks.

Investors including Sonterra Capital Master Fund, Hayman Capital Management LP and the California State Teachers' Retirement System sued 21 banks and three brokerage firms in federal court in New York in July 2015, accusing them of manipulating the rate from 2006 to 2011.

Deutsche Bank will pay US$77 million and JPMorgan US$71 million under the settlements, which were outlined in court documents filed late Friday. Neither company admitted wrongdoing under the agreements, which must still be approved by a judge.

A spokesman for Deutsche Bank declined to comment.

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The world's largest banks have paid billions of dollars in fines over the last five years to settle allegations of rigging the London interbank offered rate, a key financial benchmark used to set interest rates. Class-action lawsuits filed by investors and regulators are still making their way through the courts.

Citigroup Inc agreed to pay US$23 million to resolve the claims in February 2016 and said it would cooperate with the plaintiffs, in what the parties called an "icebreaker" intended to spur the others to settle. One of the brokerages, London-based RP Martin Holdings Ltd, also agreed to provide evidence to the investors as part of the settlement. HSBC Holdings Plc later settled for US$35 million and its cooperation.

Other banks still remaining as defendants in the suits include UBS Group AG, Barclays Plc and Royal Bank of Scotland Group Plc.