Consumer goods giant Reckitt Benckiser (RB) has been fined more than half a million pounds after failing to make a disclosure to markets correctly.
The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) handed out a penalty of £539,800 for “inadequate systems and controls to monitor share-dealing by its senior executives in its own shares” to the maker of Durex and Nurofen.
This contributed to late and incomplete disclosure to the market of share dealings by two senior executives, the regulator ruled. This was a breach of key requirements in the listing, disclosure and transparency rules, and the company failed to identify breaches of the Model Code.
The FCA's acting director of enforcement and market oversight Georgina Philippou, said: "Clear and timely disclosure of share dealings is an important way of ensuring that markets are fair and are seen to be fair. RB failed on a number of counts in relation to share dealing by two of its senior executives over a number of years. The FCA expects all listed companies to learn the lessons from this case and to ensure they have the right controls and training in place."
Weaknesses were identified in RB’s systems and controls between July 2005 and October 2012 by the FCA. These were compounded by inadequate records and training and left RB unable to properly monitor share dealings made on behalf of its senior executives by third parties, the regulator said. The company failed to notify the markets by the end of the next business day when it did become aware of the share dealings.
RB settled at an early stage, avoiding a higher fine of £771,190.