Tucker: ‘I knew nothing of Libor fixing’
Paul Tucker has “categorically” denied any involvement by the Bank of England in the Libor scandal.
The bank’s deputy governor was giving evidence to the House of Commons Treasury select committee in response to notes released by Barclays last week when he was brought before the TSC.
These notes claimed Mr Tucker had said in a phone conversation with former Barclays chief executive Bob Diamond that “senior figures within Whitehall” were concerned that Barclays was setting its Libor rate higher than some of the other main banks.
Mr Diamond subsequently told the select committee that he did not believe Mr Tucker was asking him to lower Libor rate. But Mr Tucker said that Mr Diamond’s account of their conversation could have “given the wrong impression”.
Mr Tucker described anxiety within Whitehall when Barclays decided not to take any capital support from the government during the height of the financial crisis in 2008. The bank chose instead to fund its recapitalisation from other sources, despite Mr Tucker claiming it to be “next in line” for state aid.
However, despite the concerns at the time over Barclays’s position, Mr Tucker said “absolutely not” to assertions that government officials or ministers had asked him to “lean” on Barclays or any other bank to lower their Libor submissions.
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