Bernanke, Geithner Response to Libor Scandal Rings Hollow Read more: Bernanke, Geithner Response to Libor Scandal Rings Hollow

Ben Bernanke heads the most powerful central bank in the world. Yet the Federal Reserve chairman says he was largely powerless to stop what some are calling the biggest financial fraud in history: the systematic manipulation of a key global interest rate.

It’s a line of argument that has fallen flat with some lawmakers and investors, who want to know why Bernanke and other key U.S. regulators did not do more to end a potentially criminal rigging of interest rates affecting trillions of dollars in financial contracts.

Bernanke said last week he had been largely unable to directly address problems with Libor, or the London interbank offered rate, which he said he learned of in 2008.

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