UK: Barclays Settles Two LIBOR Cases

Last Updated: 16 June 2014
Article by Michael Clark

Barclays is reported to have settled two mis-selling claims involving allegations of LIBOR-rigging, including the Graiseley Properties case, which was about to go to trial.

In an Update in December 2013, we discussed the status and implications of two cases concerning the alleged mis-selling of LIBOR-related derivatives products. The Court of Appeal had recently allowed the Graiseley and Unitech parties in ongoing proceedings against, respectively, Barclays Bank PLC and Deutsche Bank AG to amend their pleadings so as to incorporate allegations of LIBOR manipulation on the part of the banks.

It has since been reported in the press that the Graiseley case was due to go to trial at the end of April 2014, and that high-profile figures including Bob Diamond and other former Barclays senior executives were due to be called as witnesses. Cross-examination was expected to include questioning on a number of potentially embarrassing documents that the bank had disclosed as part of the normal litigation process, and the trial was scheduled to last six weeks. As such, the case was likely to have attracted a good deal of attention from the media and investment communities.

However, it has recently been reported that Barclays has settled not only the Graiseley claim but also a further mis-selling claim involving allegations of LIBOR manipulation, brought by a Portuguese construction and property group, Domingos da Silva Teixeira.

This means that, barring reversal of the Court of Appeal ruling by the Supreme Court or settlement, the Unitech case is set to be the first such claim to go to full trial in the English courts.

Given that it is estimated that trillions of pounds of derivatives contracts are based on LIBOR, the commercial implications of any judgment may be very significant indeed. Developments in this case will therefore be watched keenly by banks and by the thousands of customers who were sold complex interest rate derivatives products.

Resources

To access the full texts of the cases discussed in this update, please follow the links below:

Graiseley Properties Limited & Ors v Barclays Bank plc and Deutsche Bank AG & Ors v Unitech Global Limited & Or and Deutsche Bank AG v Unitech Limited [2013] EWCA Civ 1372 (Court of Appeal)

Graiseley Properties Limited v Barclays Bank plc [2012] EWHC 3093 (Comm) (Mr Justice Flaux)

Deutsche Bank AG & Ors v Unitech Global Limited & Or and Deutsche Bank AG v Unitech Limited [2013] EWHC 471 (Comm) (Mr Justice Cooke)

Deutsche Bank AG & Ors v Unitech Global Limited & Or and Deutsche Bank AG v Unitech Limited [2013] EWHC 2793 (Comm) (Mr Justice Teare)

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