The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) yesterday hailed the “unprecedented co-operation” between international regulators in helping to clinch its £1.1bn settlement yesterday, as the chancellor sought to capitalise on the bank settlements.
The FCA, which dubbed its probe Operation Dovercourt, unveiled the outcome of its probe alongside its US peer, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, and Swiss regulator Finma yesterday.
The fines, the largest ever handed down by the FCA, mark an important milestone in the history of the fledgling regulator, formed almost two years ago.
Chancellor George Osborne was quick to capitalise on the outcome of the probe yesterday, saying the fines reflected well on the government’s decision to overhaul UK financial regulation.
“The action we’ve taken to create this powerful new City regulator… has been justified by these events and it shows we can now have confidence in the integrity of Britain’s financial markets,” he said
The probe, which included 70 staff at the FCA working on the case, took just 13 months to wrap up – shorter than the probe into Libor fixing and despite warnings by executives the investigation would last longer.
FCA boss Martin Wheatley said in February he would be “surprised” if the investigation finished this year, while FCA enforcement boss Tracey McDermott said the probe was at a “relatively early stage” as late as April earlier this year.