JP Morgan exec hit with London Whale fine

A senior executive at JP Morgan Chase been hit with a £792,900 fine for “failing to be open and co-operative” with the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).

The FCA said Achilles Macris, who was head of CIO International for the US bank, was responsible for JP Morgan Chase’s synthetic credit portfolio at the time of what became known as the “London Whale” trades.

The regulator said that, between 28 March 2012 and 29 April 2012, Macris failed to inform the Authority about concerns it had with the synthetic credit portfolio. As a result, he failed to meet his duties as an “approved person” under Statement of Principle 4, the FCA said.

Mark Steward, the FCA’s director of enforcement and market oversight, said: “A failure to communicate openly with us can affect the well-running of markets and cause unnecessary harm to investors, especially in times of financial stress or crisis. Regulators need open communication with firms so that better decisions can be made sooner. Mr Macris should have explained the position more squarely especially when he knew the synthetic credit portfolio’s losses had worsened.”

Following the publication of certain “London Whale” articles in April 2012, the FCA said  Macris “allowed an inaccurate impression to be given” about the extent of the losses of the synthetic credit portfolio.

The FCA granted Macris a 30% of the full financial penalty, which would have been £1,132,747.

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James Fernyhough
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