Barclays fined and trader banned over gold trade price fixing attempt

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Barclays has been fined 26 million pounds (32 million euros) over attempted manipulation of the gold market.

Britain’s Financial Conduct Authority said there were control failings for Barclays’ setting of gold prices over a nine year period up until last year but the key event which led to the fine occurred in June 2012.

It also banned former Barclays trader Daniel James Plunkett for exploiting weaknesses in the British bank’s systems. He was also fine 95,600 pounds (118,000 euros).

Tracey McDermott, the FCA’s director of enforcement and financial crime, said the timing showed a particular disregard for the rules: “Plunkett’s actions came the day after the publication of our Libor and Euribor action against Barclays. The investigation and outcomes in that case meant that the firm, and Plunkett, were clearly on notice of the potential for conflicts of interests around benchmarks.”

In June 2012 Barclays had to stump up $450 million (330 million euros) for rigging Libor interest rates.

The latest fine was another blow to Barclays’ attempts to put past problems behind it.

Chief Executive Antony Jenkins, who is attempting to restore the bank’s reputation after a series of scandals, linked to a high-risk, high-reward culture, said: “We very much regret the situation that led to this settlement … these situations strengthen our resolve to improve.”

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