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UPDATE 1-Fannie Mae sues nine banks over Libor

Thursday, 31 Oct 2013 | 3:08 PM ET

NEW YORK, Oct 31 (Reuters) - U.S. mortgage finance company Fannie Mae sued nine of the world's largest banks on Thursday, accusing them of colluding to manipulate interest rates and seeking more than $800 million of damages.

In a complaint filed in the U.S. District Court in Manhattan, the company accused the banks of manipulating the London Interbank Offered Rate, or Libor, as well as other interest rate benchmarks.

Fannie Mae said this manipulation caused it to lose money on interest-rate swaps and other transactions. It is also seeking punitive damages.

Smaller rival Freddie Mac filed a similar lawsuit in March against more than a dozen banks.

"Fannie Mae filed this action to recover losses it suffered as a result of the defendants' manipulation of Libor," a spokesman said. "We have a responsibility to be good stewards of our resources."

Four of the banks sued by Fannie Mae - Barclays Plc , Rabobank, Royal Bank of Scotland Group Plc and UBS AG - have previously settled with regulators over similar allegations and admitted wrongdoing.

The other bank defendants are Bank of America Corp, Citigroup Inc, Credit Suisse Group Inc, Deutsche Bank AG and JPMorgan Chase & Co.

Representatives of Bank of America, Barclays, Citigroup, Deutsche Bank, JPMorgan and RBS declined to comment. The other banks did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

The case is Federal National Mortgage Association v. Barclays Bank Plc et al, U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York, No. 13-07720.

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