FERC upholds Barclays fines
The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission has recommended upholding $488 million in proposed fines against Barclay's bank and several employees as punishment for alleged energy market manipulation.
In a lengthy discussion, FERC found that Barclay's failed to prove its innocence. A FERC staff filing said, "Neither Barclays nor its individual traders are able to offer any credible explanation to show their conduct was proper," and that the proposed penalties are "reasonable and appropriate."
The penalties are records for FERC, which has been on a tear lately to crack down on energy market manipulation. The Commission has recently imposed similar fines on Deutsche Bank, reaching a $1.5 million settlement last week. FERC in November suspended JP Morgan's energy trading company after finding similar manipulation and fined Constellation Energy $245 million earlier in 2012.
FERC originally proposed the fines in October for actions between 2006 and 2008 that led to total market losses of around $140 million. The Bank had 30 days to respond to and defend itself against the proposed fines, and has consistently denied any wrongdoing. It submitted over 500 pages of response, according to FERC.
-see the filing