The Financial Conduct Authority, a British financial regulator, recently fined Barclays £26 million, or $43.9 million, for improperly attempting to fix the market price of gold at its customers’ expense, according to a May 23 New York Times article.
The FCA cited Barclays’ continued failure to “adequately manage conflicts of interest” between itself and its customers from 2004 to 2013, and for an inability to manage its internal controls.
The financial regulator also fined a former Barclays trader, Daniel James Plunkett, for £95,600 (about $160,600) and forbade him from entering any regulated financial activities in the future because of his moves to profit at the expense of a customer in 2012, the New York Times reported.
According to the International Business Times, Plunkett purposely took advantage of the weaknesses in Barclays’ regulatory systems in an attempt to influence that day’s gold fixing on June 28, 2012.
Because Plunkett influenced that day’s gold price, Barclays was not required to pay a customer £3.9 million, thus boosting Plunkett’s trading book by $1.75 million. Barclays has since repaid the customer, but the FCA’s fine still stands.