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US Watchdog Seeks $470 Million Fine From Barclays PLC-Reuters


Wednesday, 31 Oct 2012 09:43pm EDT 

Reuters reported that U.S. regulators threatened to fine Barclays PLC roughly $470 million to settle allegations that the bank and four traders manipulated California electricity markets, reviving the specter of a sector-wide crackdown on energy trading. The bank has 30 days to show why it should not be penalized for an alleged scheme of manipulating physical electricity prices at a loss in order to make profits in related positions in the swaps market, a strategy known as a loss-leader. British bank Barclays said it would fight the agency, likely setting up a landmark legal battle that could set a precedent over whether the once-common trading ploy in commodity markets is illegal or simply ill-advised. 

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