County of Sacramento LIBOR Lawsuit

Sacramento County, California sued 22 global banks in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of California on July 23, 2013.

The County alleges that the banks engaged in a scheme to manipulate the London Interbank Offered Rate (LIBOR) in violation of state and federal antitrust and common laws (California’s Cartwright Act, Cal. Bus. and Prof. Code §§ 16700-16770 and the federal Sherman Act,  15 U.S.C. §§ 1–7).

The case is:

County of Sacramento v. Bank of America Corp., et al. (No. 13-1476, E.D. Calif.).

The complaint is here.

The County contends that the defendants’ actions deprived it “of the rate of interest that Plaintiff should have received from its investments or financial instruments.”

And:

“From at least as early as August of 2007, the Defendant banks conspired to, and did, manipulate LIBOR by misreporting to the British Bankers’ Association the accurate interest rate at which each expected they could borrow funds from the other LIBOR member banks. In the case of artificially suppressing LIBOR, Defendants were able to significantly reduce, for example, the amount that should be paid to counterparties, including Plaintiff.”

The County has also asserted additional claims for fraud and deceit, negligent misrepresentation, interference with economic advantage, breach of the implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing and unjust enrichment.

The County is represented by Joseph W. Cotchett, Nanci E. Nishimura, Frank C. Damrell Jr. and Aron K. Liang of Cotchett, Pitre & McCarthy in Burlingame, California, and John F. Whisenhunt and Krista C. Whitman of the County of Sacramento, Office of County Counsel, in Sacramento.

*The case has been added to the multidistrict litigation — docket number 11-2262 — in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York — please see here — and see here for a recent (August 23, 2013) ruling (denying motions by over-the-counter (OTC), bondholder and exchange-based plaintiffs for leave to amend their amended complaints to add allegations of antitrust injury related to their claims) by the judge ( Naomi Reice Buchwald) in that multidistrict matter*

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