Monday 22 January 2018

UK regulator probes private accounts of forex traders

Martin Wheatley, the chief executive of the new Financial Conduct Authority
Martin Wheatley, the chief executive of the new Financial Conduct Authority

The UK's Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) is probing the use of personal accounts by foreign exchange traders amid allegations that traders used these accounts to trade their own money ahead of clients' orders,

The Financial Times reported the investigation today, citing two sources, saying the FCA had asked several banks to investigate whether traders used undeclared personal accounts.

A spokesman for the FCA declined to comment.

The FT also reported, citing sources, that the compliance departments at top banks were now looking at tightening rules on personal accounts for foreign exchange traders because of the probes.

Over the past two years, regulators and prosecutors have extracted billions in fines from global banks after finding that they rigged Libor, the average rate at which a panel of banks expects to borrow money.

The Libor investigations have forced authorities to scrutinize other benchmarks, including those that undergird the $5.3 trillion-a-day currency market, to investigate whether they are open to similar kinds of skewing.

Regulators in Switzerland, the UK and Hong Kong said in October they were investigating the conduct in currency markets.

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