US regulator Finra has slapped Barclays Capital with a $3.75 million fine for a decade-long failure to properly preserve electronic records, e-mails and instant messages.
Finra (the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority) says that from at least 2002 to 2012, Barclays failed to properly save business-related information such as order and trade ticket data, trade confirmations, blotters, and account records.
Under federal securities laws the records should have been kept in non-rewritable, non-erasable format - known in industry parlance as 'Write-Once, Read-Many' or 'Worm'.
Brad Bennett, chief of enforcement, Finra, says: "Ensuring the integrity, accuracy and accessibility of electronic books and records is essential to a firm's ability to meet its compliance obligations. The format errors in this case made it nearly impossible for Barclays to verify that these key materials remained in an unaltered condition."
In addition, millions of Bloomberg instant messages as well as attachments to some Bloomberg e-mails were not properly retained for several years, hindering the bank's ability to respond to requests for electronic communications in regulatory and civil matters, says Finra.
Barclays neither admitted nor denied the charges, but consented to the entry of Finra's findings.