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JPMorgan settles portion of antitrust foreign exchange lawsuit

Adam Jeffery | CNBC

JPMorgan Chase has settled its portion in an antitrust lawsuit that alleged manipulation of foreign exchange benchmark rates, according to court filings.

The settlement terms for the largest U.S. bank were not disclosed in the letter filed in Manhattan court on Monday by the lawyers of the bank and the plaintiffs. A settlement agreement should be filed in court by the end of January.

JPMorgan stock was down 2.5 percent following the news.

In the consolidated antitrust lawsuit, several investors including hedge funds, the city of Philadelphia and public pension funds claimed that a dozen banks violated federal antitrust laws, conspiring since January 2003 to rig prices in the $5 trillion per day foreign exchange market. Defendants include including JPMorgan, Bank of America, Barclays, Deutsche, Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley.

The lawsuit claimed traders from the banks used chat rooms, email and instant messaging to work together to rig rates.

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The settlement concludes JPMorgan's involvement in the U.S. civil class action suit but two other civil action suits on its alleged foreign exchange manipulations have not been settled yet. Separately, the Department of Justice's criminal investigation continues on JPMorgan's foreign exchange conduct.

"The settlement is a responsible step by Chase in addressing its involvement in the forex trading,'' Michael Hausfeld, a lawyer for the investors, said in a phone interview with Reuters. "It is a beginning with respect to the accountability of other banks engaged in the same trading.''

A JPMorgan spokesman declined to provide CNBC with comment.

—Reuters contributed to this report.