Wed, Apr 03, 2013 - Page 15 News List

UBS wins bid to seal documents in ex-traders’ lawsuit

‘SERIOUS MISCONDUCT’:The banking giant is being sued by two former staff who say they were let go as part of a cover-up, but who UBS says were fired justly


UBS AG said that two former traders in Singapore who are suing it for wrongful dismissal were fired for serious misconduct, after the bank won a bid yesterday to seal documents in the cases.

“Premature disclosure of the bank’s investigation into the fired traders would hamper the bank’s ongoing probe into the matter, as well as the review carried out globally by regulators looking into the manipulation of rate fixing,” the bank said in a court filing last month.

Later court documents were sealed after a closed hearing at High Court of Singapore yesterday.

Mukesh Kumar Chhaganlal, UBS’s former co-head of macro trading for emerging markets in Asia, and Prashant Mirpuri, a former executive director, claimed in separate lawsuits that they were fired in a bid by UBS to cover up its role in allegedly manipulating key reference rates.

UBS, which was fined about US$1.5 billion in December last year by US, UK and Swiss regulators for trying to rig global interest rates, is still being investigated by agencies in Singapore and Hong Kong.

UBS intends to defend itself against the lawsuits, the Zurich-based bank said in its March 22 applications to seal the files in the court cases.

The Feb. 7 firings of the two traders were to cover up UBS’s role “in the growing scandal related to alleged fixing of rates of non-deliverable forwards,” the traders’ lawsuits said.

A non-deliverable forward is a derivative traders use to speculate on the movement of currencies that are subject to domestic foreign exchange restrictions.

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