Value of FCA fines imposed on executives doubles

The value of fines levied against individuals by financial regulator the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) more than doubled last financial year, new research has found.

According to research carried out by Clyde & Co, using information from the FCA fines register, the value of fines paid by individuals in the year ended 31 March was £17m, compared to £7m the previous year.

This increase in fines faced by individual executives backs up a speech by Tim Parkes, the head of the FCA’s Regulatory Decisions Committee, given at the Legal Week Banking Litigation and Regulation Forum in London last week.

In his speech the former Herbert Smith Freehills litigation partner predicted that there would be an increase in cases against individual business executives, as a result of a drive to improve culture and governance in the City.

He also argued that the newly introduced Senior Managers and Certification Regime would increase the focus on individuals, saying that it would “give greater clarity over an individual’s responsibilities and increase accountability”, leading to a likely rise in cases against individuals.”

The total value of fines handed out by the FCA actually fell last year to £898m from £1.41bn the previous year.

Clyde & Co disputes partner John Whittaker said that the drop in fines was connected to the end of proceedings related to banking scandals such as the foreign exchange and Libor rigging scandals.

“The big ticket fines from the recent banking scandals look to have dried up, but other cases may be in the pipeline,” Whittaker said.