City of Philadelphia Sues to Recover for Financial Harm Caused by Libor Suppression

Philadelphia, July 29, 2013–  The City of Philadelphia filed a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania against a number of Wall Street banks responsible for setting the London Inter-Bank Offered Rate (“Libor”), alleging that the banks’ efforts to suppress Libor caused significant financial harm to the City of Philadelphia, and many others, on Friday, July 26.  The suit was filed on behalf of the City by Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan LLP, Obermayer Rebmann Maxwell & Hippel LLP and Boni & Zack LLC.


The complaint alleges that by mid-2007 the banks were secretly conspiring to suppress Libor – an index that was used to set the parties’ obligations under certain financial instruments.  By conspiring to lower the reported Libor rate, the banks artificially reduced the amounts they would have to pay to the City of Philadelphia and increased how much the City of Philadelphia had to pay, causing the City to lose the promised financial benefits of the instruments.


“Cities and others paid for those benefits in reliance on the trustworthiness of the Libor rate, and on other rates based on Libor.  The systematic suppression of Libor, as our attorneys have uncovered, caused financial harm to the City of Philadelphia,” said Rob Dubow, the City’s Director of Finance.


“We believe that the suppression of Libor caused similar harm to other cities, counties, and state governments and authorities nationwide,” said Steig D. Olson of Quinn Emanuel.  “This conduct, which was kept secret for years, impacted the City of Philadelphia and many other governmental entities at a time when budgets were already being strained by the financial crisis.”


In addition to Mr. Olson, the City of Philadelphia is represented by Daniel Brockett and Dan Cunningham, also of Quinn Emanuel; Mathieu Shapiro of Obermayer Rebmann Maxwell & Hippel LLP, a leading Philadelphia law firm; and Joshua D. Snyder, of Boni & Zack LLC, a litigation boutique based in Bala Cynwyd.




About Quinn Emanuel:

Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan, LLP is a 600+ lawyer business litigation firm—the largest in the world devoted solely to business litigation—with offices in Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco, Silicon Valley, Washington, D.C., Chicago, Tokyo, London, Mannheim, Moscow, Hamburg, Paris, and Sydney.  With an 88.7% track record for success representing both plaintiffs and defendants in high stakes litigation, Quinn Emanuel attorneys have obtained four 9-figure jury verdicts, ten 9-figure settlements, and six 10-figure settlements on behalf of clients.  Further information is available at

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