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Deutsche Bank to pay US$240m to end Libor rigging lawsuit in US

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Deutsche Bank AG has agreed to pay US$240 million to settle private US antitrust litigation accusing it of conspiring with other banks to manipulate the Libor benchmark interest rate.

[NEW YORK] Deutsche Bank AG has agreed to pay US$240 million to settle private US antitrust litigation accusing it of conspiring with other banks to manipulate the Libor benchmark interest rate.

The preliminary settlement with the German bank was disclosed in filings on Tuesday with the US District Court in Manhattan, and requires a judge's approval.

Deutsche Bank is the third bank to resolve claims by so-called "over-the-counter" investors that transacted directly with banks on a panel to determine Libor.

Citigroup Inc reached a similar US$130 million settlement last July, while the British bank Barclays Plc settled for US$120 million in November 2015.

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Deutsche Bank denied wrongdoing, but settled to avoid the risks, costs and distraction of litigation, court papers show.

A spokesman, Troy Gravitt, said the bank was pleased to settle.

Libor, or the London Interbank Offered Rate, is used by banks to set rates on hundreds of trillions of dollars of credit card, mortgage, student loan and other transactions, and to determine the cost of borrowing from each other.

Investors including the city of Baltimore and Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut had accused 16 banks of conspiring to manipulate Libor, in the private litigation that began in 2011.

Michael Hausfeld, a lawyer for the investors, in a statement called the Deutsche Bank settlement "an excellent achievement for the class."

Banks have paid roughly US$9 billion to settle Libor-rigging probes worldwide.

Last July, the head of the UK Financial Conduct Authority said that regulator will phase out Libor by the end of 2021, citing a lack of data to underpin it.

REUTERS