bank of england

The jury in the trial of Tom Hayes, the former UBS and Citigroup trader charged with manipulating global Libor interest rates, has retired to digest nine weeks of evidence.

Mr Hayes has pleaded not guilty to eight counts of conspiracy to defraud, saying he did not alter the London Interbank Offered Rate – the agreed rate at which large banks charge each other for borrowing.

The Serious Fraud Office alleges that Mr Hayes, from Fleet, Hampshire, corralled and bribed traders across 10 lenders into manipulating the rate for a profit.

It was revealed earlier this month that Hayes frequently wrote a Libor wishlist on Facebook, in statements like “Tom needs a low one-month Libor” or “Tom needs a high three-month”. He told investigators he even dreamt about rates because they “underlined everything that I traded”.

Hayes had admitted that he was extremely open about trying to influence rates and said that the practice was widespread. He had left a trail of emails and computer chats requesting higher or lower Libor rates, the court heard.

“I could’ve done a million things to reduce the trail,” he said in one of the interview transcripts, read out to the court.

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