London Whale Bruno Iksil Avoids Charges In The UK And US

London Whale Bruno Iksil Avoids Charges In The UK And US
Joe Mabel [CC BY-SA 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons

It looks like the London Whale — a French national named Bruno Iksil — will not face any further legal repercussion for his leading role in JPMorgan $6.2 billion derivatives trading loss back in 2012. The UK’s Financial Conduct Authority confirmed on Thursday that they will not be pursuing charges against Iksil.

Iksil had been accused in both the UK and the U.S. of market misconduct and not preventing the incorrect marking of instruments to market after he made giant  bets on the derivatives market that resulted in more than $6 billion in losses for JPMorgan in 2012.

Iksil — known in the relatively small derivatives market as the London Whale — was eventually determined to be the one responsible for making the monumental trades from the London arm of the bank’s chief investment office.

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More on London Whale case

Michael Potts, of the law firm Byrne and Partners, Iksil’s legal representative, said they had received a letter signed by FCA lead investigator Laura Dawes saying that the agency would take no action following its investigation.

When contacted by the media, the FCA confirmed the decision. Of note, U.S. regulators dropped the charges against Iksil back in mid-2013.

However, other cases are underway in the U.S. relating to other employees of JPMorgan’s chief investment office around the same time.

At the time U.S. authorities made the call to drop the legal proceedings against Iksil in 2013, a knowledgeable Wall Street Journal source noted that Iksil had given authorities evidence of internal communications at JPMorgan during the period those losses mounted, suggesting he was not the lone, rogue trader he was initially made out to be.

JPMorgan had no comment on the matter on Thursday. Of note, CEO Jamie Dimon has apologized to shareholders for the problem and said the bank has improved operational controls so as to prevent a similar incident in the future.

The FCA letter detailed that the action was stopped following a meeting of the FCA’s Regulatory Decisions Committee. The RDC was established by UK law to independently review all FCA enforcement actions.

Statement from London Whale Bruno Iksil

A statement issued by Iksil’s legal team noted he was “considering his position and rights.” It read: “He remains a cooperating witness in ongoing U.S. criminal and civil proceedings and will make no further comment at this time so as not to prejudice those proceedings.”

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