Fired Barclays FX Trader Says He Was ‘Scapegoat’ for ‎’Last Look’‎ ‎Abuse

In 2015, the NY regulator fined Barclays $150 million and ordered it to sack ‎‎Fotheringhame.

A former foreign exchange trader fired by Barclays Plc said that he was a ‎scapegoat and that the British multinational bank had dishonestly contrived his ‎dismissal to divert attention from its own failings.‎

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David Fotheringhame, a former head of automated trading for electronic fixed ‎income, currencies and commodities, is claiming unfair dismissal in a London ‎court after being sacked by Barclays in 2015 for misconduct relating to the ‎controversial practice of ‘last look’. ‎

According to a Bloomberg report, the bank’s lawyer said in court that ‎Fotheringhame’s job was to “look at the data, identify those clients who ‎could be regarded as toxic because of their order flow and set last look ‎accordingly”. The former trader replied that “the system automatically will be gentle to ‎gentle clients.”

He added that the order was unfair but officials ‎signed it “on pain of losing their banking license and hence having to ‎close their U.S. businesses.” ‎

In 2015, the NY regulator fined Barclays $150 million and ordered it to sack ‎Fotheringhame for using its automated forex trading system to reject client ‎orders that would have been unprofitable for the bank.

This order against the former head of automated electronic forex trading was part of ‎a long-running effort to cover up the abuse ‎of the last look policy to benefit his bank at the expense of its ‎clients. According to the court filing, Fotheringhame told staffers to “just obfuscate ‎and stonewall when the sales teams asked questions.”‎

The lawsuit provides a glimpse into the banks’ use of one of FX market’s most ‎common, and potentially abusive, practices. The practice allows market makers ‎get a final opportunity lasting a few milliseconds to reject an order after a client ‎commits to a trade at a quoted price. ‎

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