Bank of America has agreed to a $67 million settlement with several states including Florida amid an investigation into allegations members of the bank took part in a scheme involving bids on municipal bond derivatives.
The settlement is the result of the involvement of individuals at Bank of America “in a nationwide scheme to allegedly rig bids and engage in other anticompetitive conduct relating to municipal bond derivatives that defrauded state agencies, local governmental entities and not-for-profit entities,” according to a Florida Attorney General’s Office press release.
A joint federal and state criminal and civil investigation found that between 1998 and 2003 “Bank of America and other financial institutions and brokers allegedly rigged bids, improperly assisted in the bidding process and submitted non-competitive ‘courtesy’ bids on these investments,” according to the press release.
“The alleged schemes enriched financial institutions or brokers at the expense of state agencies, local governmental entities, and nonprofit organizations,” the release goes onto say.
Entities in Florida such as cities and nonprofits found to have been ”injured” by the practices are eligible for a slice of the $5.2 million awarded the state in the settlement.
The investigation into the matter began after Bank of America officials self-reported the “wrong-doing” to the U.S. Department of Justice, according to the attorney general’s office.