Barclays, Trader Fined For Insider Dealing

Jun 1 2007 | 11:21am ET

The Securities and Exchange Commission has sued Barclays Bank and Steven Landzberg, a former proprietary trader for Barclays’ U.S. distressed-debt desk, accusing both of insider trading. 

The complaint, filed in New York federal court, alleges that Barclays and Landzberg traded millions of dollars of bond securities between March 2002 and September 2003 via nonpublic information received through six creditors’ committees. Landzberg, who simultaneously served as Barclays’ representative on the creditors’ committees and as its proprietary trader, received nonpublic information concerning the financial condition and prospects of the issuers among other detailed information.

Barclays and Landzberg allegedly misappropriated the information, failing to disclose any of their trades to the creditors committees, issuers, or their bond trading counterparties.

The complaint further alleges that Barclays’ senior management authorized Landzberg to buy and sell securities for Barclays’ account while he served on bankruptcy creditors’ committees. Barclays’ compliance personnel failed to prevent the illegal insider trading, despite receiving notice that the proprietary desk had nonpublic information and should have been restricted from trading.

Barclays and Landzberg each consented without admitting or denying the allegations in the commission’s complaint. Barclays was ordered to pay $10.9 million and Landzberg to pay a civil money penalty of $750,000.

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