New York regulator launches forex probe: source

NEW YORK (AFP) - New York state's financial regulator has demanded documents from more than 12 banks in the latest probe of foreign exchange market manipulation, a person familiar with the probe said Wednesday.

Benjamin Lawsky, New York's Superintendent of Financial Services, ordered documents from Goldman Sachs, Deutsche Bank, Barclays, Lloyds, RBS and Standard Charter, among others.

Authorities in the United States, Britain, Switzerland, Hong Kong and Singapore have opened probes into whether the large banks manipulated foreign exchange.

Investigators suspect that traders from different banks may have used chat rooms to share information about trades in ways that benefited their positions.

"It's become apparent that some of the activity occurred in New York," said the source, who spoke on the condition of anonymity.

The head of Britain's Financial Conduct Authority told a parliamentary panel Tuesday that the allegations were comparable to the case over rigging Libor, the key London interbank interest rate that anchors financial deals world-wide.

Several banks have already agreed to pay billions of dollars to settle charges in that scandal.

HSBC and Citigroup are among the large banks that have suspended traders in the wake of the probes into foreign exchange market manipulation.

Deustche Bank fired three foreign currency traders in New York, the New York Times reported Wednesday.

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