Britain’s markets regulator is seeking to fine former Deutsche Bank trader Christian Bittar about $17m for allegedly trying to rig benchmark interest rates, its largest ever penalty against an individual, said a person with knowledge of the situation.
Bloomberg News reports that the Financial Conduct Authority notified Bittar in recent weeks that it intends to penalize him for attempting to manipulate the euro interbank offered rate, said the person, who asked not to be identified because the notice is confidential.
The penalty would dwarf the $9.6m imposed on Rameshkumar Goenka, an investor, for manipulating stocks in London, the regulator’s biggest to date. The FCA has said it’s preparing to fine at least seven other traders it didn’t identify for their roles in trying to rig the London interbank offered rate or similar benchmarks. At least two may be fined more than one million pounds each, according to people with knowledge of the talks.
Bittar is able to appeal the planned penalty to the Regulatory Decisions Committee, an internal FCA advisory panel made up of industry figures including lawyers and accountants, and could turn to the courts if he loses in that bid.
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