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The European Union will be very cross if it finds out that the International Swaps and Derivatives Association conspired with its members to keep out would-be members.
The European Commission, which oversees antitrust regulation, had “found preliminary indications that I.S.D.A. may have been involved in a coordinated effort of investment banks to delay or prevent exchanges from entering the credit derivatives business,” European antitrust regulators said in a statement. “Such behavior, if established, would stifle competition in the internal market in breach of E.U. antitrust rules….”
The commission is using the full arsenal of European Union competition law to investigate the matter, including a statute prohibiting firms from covertly rigging the market and another prohibiting big firms from bullying smaller ones. The commission said on Tuesday that it suspected the banks of acting “through collusion or an abuse of a possible collective dominance.”