Euribor facing bank exodus on Rabobank departure

Strategic Reasons

Rabobank’s departure from the panel that sets the benchmark for euro loans followed the exit of Bayerische Landesbank, Germany’s second-biggest state-owned lender, which said it withdrew on Jan. 1 for “business-strategic reasons.” Citigroup Inc. and DekaBank Deutsche Girozentrale left the group of euro rate-setters last year.

Rabobank withdrew from the panels that calculate Libor in yen, Canadian dollars, Swiss francs, Danish krone and Swedish krona in June. The Dutch lender continues to contribute to Libor in dollars, euros and pounds.

“I do sincerely hope this chapter can be closed next year,” Rabobank Chief Executive Officer Piet Moerland told Bloomberg News when questioned about the investigation.

The European Commission sought views last year on how to overhaul the governance and setting of Euribor, Libor and other market benchmarks in the wake of the scandal that has engulfed interbank lending rates.

The Commission, the executive arm of the 27-nation European Union, will come forward with draft legislation later this year, said Stefaan De Rynck, a spokesman for Michel Barnier, the EU’s financial services chief.

“In the future, the Commission may make it mandatory for very large banks to participate in this kind of benchmark,” Euribor-EBF’s Quemener said. Even with Rabobank’s exit from Euribor, “there’s no impact on the final fixing, or on its robustness.”

Bloomberg News

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