The Financial Services Authority (FSA) has imposed a fine of ₤72,000 against Steven Noel Perkins for market abuse. The agency also has banned Perkins from working in the financial services industry for his impropriety for a minimum of 5 years.
Perkins, a former employee of PVM Oil Futures Ltd., used to trade orders on execution-only-basis in Brent Crude Futures (Brent) contracts on the ICE Futures Europe (ICE). In the early morning of 30 June 2009 and without any client authorization, however, he traded on ICE in extremely high volume for a Brent contract. As a result, the price for Brent increased to an abnormal and artificial level. When confronted by his employer, he tried to cover-up his unauthorized trading by telling lies.
Before the FSA, Perkins confessed to be an alcoholic and promised that the incident won’t happen again by joining a rehabilitation program to stop his excessive drinking. In imposing the fine and the ban, FSA ruled that Perkins’ drunkenness did not excuse him for his market abuse. He was declared to be an unfit person to be involved in a regulated activity such as trading. He may be rehabilitated over time and may be fit and proper again, thus, the ban imposed was a minimum of 5 years only. The fine imposed against him was originally ₤150,000 but was reduced to ₤90,000 in view of Perkins’ financial status. It was further reduced to ₤72,000 after he was proved to be qualified for the discount of 20% under FSA’s executive settlement procedures.