Bloomberg reports that Joaquin Almunia, whose term ends on October 31st, is determined to punish the two banks as well as Credit Agricole and interdealer broker ICAP before he leaves office, said three people familiar with the probe who asked not to be named because the process is private. To meet the target, he plans to send so-called statements of objections in the Euribor and Libor cases close to Easter, two of the people said.
'He will want to end on a high note', Pierre-Henri Conac, a professor specializing in banking at the University of Luxembourg, said in an interview. 'He’ll be happy to say: ‘I did it.’'
Almunia, 65, sees the fines as unfinished business after the four holdouts ruined his attempt to get a clean sweep of settlements in rate-rigging cases, part of a global scandal that tarnished the reputation of some of the world’s biggest lenders. The next seven months are the last chance for the former Spanish economist to burnish his legacy after he pledged to quit political life when he leaves the European Commission.
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