An anonymous insider from one of Britain’s biggest lenders – aside from Barclays – explains how he and his colleagues helped manipulate the UK’s bank borrowing rate. Neither the insider nor the bank can be identified for legal reasons.
It was during a weekly economic briefing at the bank in early 2008 that I first heard the phrase. A sterling swaps trader told the assembled economists and managers that “Libor was dislocated with itself”. It sounded so nonsensical that, at first, it just confused everyone, and provoked a little laughter.
Before long, though, I was drawing up presentations to explain the “dislocation of Libor from itself” for corporate relationship managers. I was deciphering the subject in emails, internally and externally. And I was using the phrase myself openly with customers of the bank.
What I was explaining was that the bank was manipulating Libor. Only I didn’t see it like that at the time.