Britain’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) said it would fine Barclays 50 million pounds ($55 million) for its failure to disclose fees paid to Qatari entities during its financial crisis-era fundraising.
The fine dates back to the height of the 2008-09 crisis, when Barclays scrambled to raise funds from overseas investors including Qatar to avoid a state bailout.
The British bank paid unsolicited fees to Qatari funds involved in its rescue, the FCA said, which were calculated specifically by reference to the Qataris’ demands rather than advisory services that Barclays had said it expected to receive.
The FCA said that information would have been highly pertinent to investors and shareholders, in a situation where the costs of the deal were already seen as highly expensive.
A spokesperson for Barclays said the bank has referred the findings of the Regulatory Decisions Committee to the Upper Tribunal for reconsideration.
The delay over the proposed fine arrives due to the FCA staying proceedings in the case while the Serious Fraud Office pursued charges against three former Barclays bankers over the fundraising.
All three were acquitted in early 2020, leaving the FCA’s potential fine as the last action hanging over the British bank concerning the deal.
The Qatar Investment Authority, which maintains a stake in Barclays, said in 2020 that it remained a committed shareholder, investor, and partner to Barclays, and was neither investigated nor accused of any wrongdoing.