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Three lenders agree to $950,000 settlement to resolve antitrust complaints in WV

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The Mountain State will receive $950,000 through a settlement with three of the more than 20 institutions that had been charged with antitrust violations for allegedly rigging bids, fixing prices and manipulating the market for municipal derivatives, West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey reports.

Signing off on the settlement were GE Funding Capital Market Services, Trinity Plus Funding Co. LLC and Trinity Funding Co. LLC. Each had denied the allegations at the time the complaint was filed and, in the settlement, denied they did anything wrong, Morrisey said.

“We are pleased our office could reach this settlement with the three financial institutions,” Attorney General Morrisey said. “Our office worked diligently on this case, and it is good to see the work pay off.”

The settlement closes claims the Attorney General’s office had against the three lenders. Morrisey’s office had also reached settlements with Royal Bank of Canada, Bank of America, Morgan Stanley, and JPMorgan Chase in the past year and a half, he said.

Lawsuits against the remaining banks are ongoing.

The majority of the money from the settlement, minus attorney fees and costs, will go to state agencies that invested in municipal derivatives, including the West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission, the West Virginia Water Development Authority, West Virginia University’s Board of Governors, the West Virginia Economic Development Authority, the West Virginia Hospital Finance Authority, Shepherd University, the West Virginia School Building Authority, the West Virginia Department of Highways, West Virginia Housing Development Fund, and Fairmont State University’s Board of Governors.

The Attorney General’s Office was represented in the case by the Charleston-based Berthold Law Firm.

 

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