West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey announced the West Virginia University Foundation and a Parkersburg hospital will receive more than $600,000 to resolve claims related to prior investments that involved global financial firm UBS.
The funding is part of a larger $68 million, 40-state settlement with UBS to resolve allegations of fraudulent conduct involving manipulation of LIBOR rates, a benchmark interest rate that affects financial instruments worth trillions of dollars and has a far-reaching impact on global markets and consumers.
“Word of more than $600,000 for these entities comes as welcome news as organizations far and wide cope with the COVID-19 pandemic,” Attorney General Morrisey said. “Honesty is paramount when investing. Fraud and manipulation of rates and markets cannot be tolerated by any bank or institution.”
The WVU Foundation, which solicits and administers private support on behalf of the university, will receive $432,115 from the settlement.
WVU Medicine Camden Clark Memorial Hospital in Parkersburg will also receive $177,292.
The WVU Foundation and Camden Clark were eligible since both entities had LIBOR-linked swaps and other financial instruments with UBS. Funds will be distributed at a later date.
Pursuant to the settlement agreement, finalized in December 2018, UBS has cooperated with the states to help facilitate civil enforcement efforts, including the distribution of funds to victims. The claims process has continued ever since.
The Attorney General alleged UBS misrepresented the integrity of the LIBOR benchmark by concealing, misrepresenting and failing to disclose that UBS at times made LIBOR submissions to avoid negative publicity, protect the reputation of the bank and benefit its derivative trading positions.
The alleged conduct led to UBS making millions in unjust gains when government entities and not-for-profit organizations entered into swaps and other financial instruments with UBS without knowing that UBS and other LIBOR-setting banks were manipulating their LIBOR submissions.