Outsourcing failure blamed for $2.3b loss by UBS trader

Tags: Companies

Banking giant fined £29.7m for not preventing unauthorised trading

Key controls for “detection of suspicious trading activity” failed at an India outsourcing unit, contributing to $2.3-billion loss caused by a rogue trader of global banking giant UBS, a joint probe by British and Swiss regulators has found.

This is the third instance when outsourcing of key oversight jobs by global banks (British giants HSBC and Standard Chartered being the other two) to India has come under the regulatory scanner abroad for ineffective controls against suspicious financial transactions.

UK’s Financial Services Authority (FSA) fined UBS £29.7 million (about Rs 265 crore) for failing to prevent large-scale unauthorised trading in this case, while Swiss regulator FINMA (Financial Market Supervisory Authority) also said it has found serious risk management deficiencies and major control failures at the bank.

In its probe report, FINMA said that UBS’ back office operations team was responsible for ensuring timely confirmation of deferred-settlement trades, identified through “a specific report maintained by an outsourcing provider based in India (the ‘T+14 report’)”.

The probe found that the bank’s online trade supervision system SCP (Supervisory Control Portal) and the ‘T+14’ report were key controls for the detection of suspicious trading activity, but both proved to be ineffective.

“The failures of these controls serve to illustrate poor organisation and risk management within UBS,” FINMA said.

FSA and FINMA jointly initiated a probe in September 2011 after it came to the light that a London-based trader of Swiss banking major had caused substantial losses totalling $2.3 billion (about Rs 13,000 crore) due to unauthorised trading on the bank's Exchange Traded Fund (ETF) desk.

Post new comment

E-mail ID will not be published
CAPTCHA
This question is for testing whether you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.

EDITORIAL OF THE DAY

  • Child abuse needs to be tackled with the seriousness it deserves

    The Bangalore rape case has again brought into focus an issue we Indians forever shy away from facing up to — child sexual abuse.

FC NEWSLETTER

Stay informed on our latest news!

INTERVIEWS

GV Nageswara Rao

MD & CEO, IDBI Federal Life

Timothy Moe

Goldman Sachs

Chander Mohan Sethi

CMD, Reckitt Benckiser India

COLUMNIST

Varun Dutt

<b>Riskfactor</b>: THE BASE RATE BIAS

Base rate fallacy, also called base rate neglect or base ...

Parvez Imam

Revisiting history can do us all good

We often think that we understand history. We read it ...

Bubbles Sabharwal

Your happiness doesn’t depend on your needs

They are two different words (and even worlds) altogether: having ...

INTERVIEWS

William D. Green

Chairman & CEO, Accenture