UPDATE 2-Danske Bank fined by Nasdaq OMX over AstraZeneca share trading
* Danske Bank to pay 500,000 SEK for breaching trading rules
* It placed orders that were not intended to result in trades -Nasdaq OMX
* The orders were genuine and intended to lead to trades -Danske Bank (Adds Danske Bank comment)
April 16 (Reuters) - The Nasdaq OMX stock exchange in Stockholm has fined Danske Bank 500,000 Swedish crowns ($76,100) for breaching trading rules in a placing of orders for shares in drugs company AstraZeneca, it said on Wednesday.
The market's disciplinary committee accused the bank of having placed orders for shares in AstraZeneca (AZN) that were not intended to result in trades but to send signals to other market participants.
"Danske Bank had repeatedly placed orders pertaining to very large blocks of shares in AZN, orders that were cancelled after a few seconds," Nasdaq OMX said.
The bank had placed smaller orders on the opposite side of the order book that remained in place for longer periods of time and resulted in trades, Nasdaq OMX said.
"On the whole, the trading pattern indicated that there was no intention that the orders registered would result in a trade, and that they had instead been designed during brief periods to send signals to other market participants of an increased supply of, or demand for, AZN shares," Nasdaq OMX said.
Nasdaq OMX said it assumed that the trader and Danske Bank did not realise that the trading pattern was prohibited and that the bank, immediately after the disciplinary matter had been initiated, said the trading pattern would cease.
The disciplinary committee therefore decided to impose a fine at the lower end of the scale and the trader involved has been sent a warning, it said.
Danske Bank's head of equity trading, Henrik Voetmann Mikkelsen, said that the dealer concerned had intended to make a genuine transaction with a commercial purpose but the bank accepted the disciplinary committee's decision and has emphasised strongly to its dealers how the rules should be interpreted.
In February Denmark's public prosecutor for serious economic and international crime said it was investigating Danske Bank over alleged price manipulation. ($1=6.5695 Swedish crowns) (Reporting by Teis Jensen and Stine Jacobsen; Editing by Greg Mahlich and David Goodman)