ICE LIBOR® (also known as LIBOR®) is a widely-used benchmark for short-term interest rates.
The LIBOR methodology is designed to produce an average rate that is representative of the rates at which large, leading internationally active banks with access to the wholesale, unsecured funding market could fund themselves in such market in particular currencies for certain tenors.
LIBOR is currently calculated for five currencies (USD, GBP, EUR, CHF and JPY) and for seven tenors in respect of each currency (Overnight/Spot Next, One Week, One Month, Two Months, Three Months, Six Months and 12 Months). This results in the publication of 35 individual rates (one for each currency and tenor combination) every applicable London business day.
Used globally, LIBOR is often referenced in derivative, bond and loan documentation, and in a range of consumer lending instruments such as mortgages and student loans. It is also used as a gauge of market expectation regarding central bank interest rates, liquidity premiums in the money markets and, during periods of stress, as an indicator of the health of the banking system.
Please also read the sections below on the Future of LIBOR and Information about the UK Government Statement Regarding LIBOR Transition and Intended Legislation.
The ICE LIBOR Output Statement defines LIBOR as:
"A wholesale funding rate anchored in LIBOR panel banks’ unsecured wholesale transactions to the greatest extent possible, with a waterfall to enable a rate to be published in all market circumstances".
Pursuant to the ICE LIBOR Output Statement, LIBOR is currently based on submissions from Contributor Banks that are determined through the use of a standardised, transaction data-driven Waterfall Methodology introduced by IBA. This has been the case since March 2019. Details of IBA’s evolution of LIBOR can be found in the LIBOR documentation section below.
The Waterfall Methodology requires LIBOR Contributor Banks to base their submissions in eligible wholesale, unsecured funding transactions to the extent available:
The Future of LIBOR
In July 2017, the UK Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) announced its intention that it would no longer be necessary to persuade, or compel, banks to submit to LIBOR after December 31, 2021. Since then, the FCA and other official sector bodies have strongly advised end-users of the need to transition from LIBOR by December 31, 2021. IBA has engaged with end-users, panel banks, the FCA and other official sector bodies regarding the potential for continuing certain widely-used LIBOR settings after December 31, 2021, where necessary to support transition.
Based on feedback and information received from the panel banks, and following discussions with the FCA and other official sector bodies,
immediately following the LIBOR publication on December 31, 2021; and
On December 4, 2020, IBA published its consultation on its intention to cease the publication of LIBOR® settings. The consultation is open for feedback until 5:00 pm London time on January 25, 2021. After the feedback period has closed, IBA intends to share the results of the consultation with the FCA and to publish a feedback statement summarizing responses from the consultation shortly thereafter. The consultation is not, and must not be taken to be, an announcement that IBA will cease or continue the provision of any LIBOR settings after December 31, 2021 or June 30, 2023.
IBA notes that any publication of the Overnight and 1, 3, 6 and 12 month USD LIBOR settings based on panel bank submissions beyond December 31, 2021 will need to comply with applicable regulations, including as to representativeness. Based on current information from panel banks, IBA anticipates there being a representative panel for the continuation of these USD LIBOR settings through to June 30, 2023.
Information about the UK Government Statement Regarding LIBOR Transition and Intended Legislation
The UK Government announced on 23 June 2020, that it intends to legislate to ensure that the FCA has the appropriate regulatory powers to manage and direct any wind-down period prior to eventual LIBOR cessation.
The new regulatory powers would enable the FCA to direct a methodology change for LIBOR, in circumstances where the FCA has found that:
Existing law would also be strengthened to prohibit the use of LIBOR where its representativeness will not be restored, whilst giving the FCA the ability to specify limited continued use in legacy contracts.
The FCA has welcomed the announcement and proposes to publish statements of policy on its approach to potential use of these powers following further engagement with stakeholders in the UK and internationally. In particular, the FCA has also noted that it will seek stakeholder views on possible methodology changes based on the alternative risk free rates chosen in each of the LIBOR currency jurisdictions, and on the consensus already established in international and UK markets on a way of calculating an additional fixed credit spread that reflects the expected difference between LIBOR and risk-free interest rates.
On 18 November, 2020, the FCA published a statement advising that it would consult on proposed policies regarding its proposed new powers to require continued publication of critical benchmarks (such as LIBOR currency-tenor settings) on the basis of a changed methodology in certain circumstances, and published two documents seeking feedback. On November 30, 2020, the FCA published a statement advising that it plans to consult in Q2 2021 on its proposed policy approach to the use of its proposed new powers to prohibit some or all new use by supervised entities in the UK of a critical benchmark (such as LIBOR currency-tenor settings) where a benchmark administrator has confirmed its intention that the benchmark will cease.
Both the UK Government and the FCA advise that market participants should continue to focus on active transition of legacy contracts on terms that they themselves agree with their counterparties, because this is the only way to have certainty as to contractual continuity and control over contractual terms. They caution that parties who rely on regulatory action, enabled by the proposed legislation, will not have control over the economic terms of that action. Moreover, regulatory action may not be able to address all issues or be practicable in all circumstances, for example where a methodology change is not feasible, or would not protect consumers or market integrity.
In a July 2020 speech entitled “Libor: Entering the Endgame”, Andrew Bailey, now Governor of the Bank of England, also noted that those that decide to rely on regulatory action, enabled by the legislation the UK Government plans to bring forward, will not have control over the economic terms of that action. He advised that the FCA will consult on what the action may be taken and what the limitations of any solution may be for the ‘tough legacy’, but cautioned that:
Also in July 2020, Edwin Schooling Latter, Director Markets and Wholesale Policy at the FCA, delivered a speech entitled 'The Latest in LIBOR Transition, The Path Forward'. The speech is available here.
Calculation & Publication
Each LIBOR® calculation is currently based on input data contributed by a panel of between 11 and 16 Contributor Banks for each of the five LIBOR® currencies. Each Contributor Bank contributes input data for all seven LIBOR tenors in every currency in respect of which it is on a panel.
Each currency panel is composed with reference to the LIBOR Contributor Bank Criteria, which are designed so that the contributed input data is able to produce a rate that is representative of the economic reality.
Each Contributor Bank determines its input data contributions pursuant to the ICE LIBOR Output Statement in order to produce a rate that is anchored in Contributor Banks’ wholesale, unsecured funding transactions to the greatest extent possible, with a waterfall to enable a rate to be published in all market circumstances.
LIBOR is calculated in accordance with the LIBOR Methodology. The published rate in respect of each currency and tenor combination is the arithmetic mean of each Contributor Bank’s contributions in respect of that currency and tenor (after trimming upper and lower values), rounded to five decimal places. Each Contributor Bank's contribution carries an equal weight in the calculation, subject to the trimming.
Details are shown in the table below:
|NUMBER OF CONTRIBUTORS||METHODOLOGY||NUMBER OF CONTRIBUTOR RATES AVERAGED|
|16 Contributors||4 highest and 4 lowest rates||8|
|15 Contributors||4 highest and 4 lowest rates||7|
|14 Contributors||3 highest and 3 lowest rates||8|
|13 Contributors||3 highest and 3 lowest rates||7|
|12 Contributors||3 highest and 3 lowest rates||6|
|11 Contributors||3 highest and 3 lowest rates||5|
If IBA receives fewer than the expected number of submissions in respect of a particular currency, the ICE LIBOR Reduced Submissions Policy will apply to those rates.
LIBOR is normally published for each currency and tenor combination at 11:55 am London time on each applicable London business day.
|Bank of America N.A. (London Branch)|
|Barclays Bank plc|
|BNP Paribas SA (London Branch)|
|Citibank N.A. (London Branch)|
|Cooperatieve Rabobank U.A.|
|Crédit Agricole Corporate & Investment Bank|
|Credit Suisse AG (London Branch)|
|Deutsche Bank AG (London Branch)|
|HSBC Bank plc|
|JPMorgan Chase Bank, N.A. (London Branch)|
|Lloyds Bank plc|
|Mizuho Bank, Ltd.|
|MUFG Bank, Ltd|
|National Westminster Bank plc|
|Royal Bank of Canada|
|Santander UK Plc|
|SMBC Bank International plc|
|Société Générale (London Branch)|
|The Norinchukin Bank|
Governance & Oversight
IBA maintains an oversight committee for LIBOR, which has responsibility for:
The committee has broad market representation, being comprised of Contributor Banks, benchmark users, market infrastructure providers, independent non-executive directors of IBA, and other relevant experts. Representatives from the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, the Swiss National Bank and the Bank of England also sit on the committee as observers.
Oversight Committee Meeting Public Minutes
LIBOR is published on each London business day for all currencies and tenors, except as described below.
There is no LIBOR publication in any currency or tenor if the date is a public holiday in London.
Where a valid publication day is a public holiday in the major financial centre of a currency, there is no publication in the Overnight tenor only, for that currency. All other tenors are published as normal. This rule concerns only the Euro and US Dollar, since Yen and Swiss Franc do not have an Overnight tenor.
The following tables set out the relevant holidays for the different currencies and tenors. Specific dates for each year are available on the Holiday Calendars page. The Holiday Calendars also list the designated Value Dates, by currency and tenor, for each benchmark date.
London Public Holidays
Applies to all LIBOR currencies and tenors;
Euro Public Holidays (Affects Euro Overnight tenor only)
All other relevant Euro public holidays are also London public holidays, so LIBOR is not published on these days.
U.S. Dollar Public Holidays (Affects US Dollar Overnight tenor only)
All other relevant U.S. public holidays are also London public holidays, so LIBOR is not published on these days.
ICE LIBOR® Code of Conduct
ICE LIBOR® Benchmark Statement
ICE LIBOR® Output Statement
ICE LIBOR® Oversight Committee
Assurance on Compliance with EU Benchmarks Regulation and Benchmark Methodologies
Consultations & Position Papers