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Former Barclays FX Trader’s Hearing Begins

Preliminary
hearings of former Barclays FX trader Chris Ashton’s unfair dismissal and
whistleblowing claim against the bank started on Tuesday at the East London employment
tribunal.

Judges at
the tribunal said they will decide by Wednesday whether to take into account in
their ruling a written statement made by a former Barclays employee and
presented by Barclays’ lawyers.

The
statement is key in deciding on Ashton’s whistleblowing claim. Ashton claims to
have raised concerns about traders’ chatrooms and a lack of guidelines from
Barclays about acceptable behaviour within these chatrooms as early as 2012 to
the former employee, while the bank is denying such disclosures were made,
Barclays’ lawyers said.

Ashton – former head of the voice spot FX desk at
Barclays in London – was one of the members of a traders’ chatroom known as
“The Cartel”,
accused
of colluding to manipulate foreign exchange benchmark rates
, and
subsequently fired in the wake of the scandal.

A number of banks were involved in the FX rigging probe,
which led to fines and out of court settlements totalling billions of dollars.

Ashton previously lost a complaint at the UK court on
whether he had been improperly identified in regulatory settlements related to
the scandal.

Meanwhile,
judges ordered Barclays to conduct a search among its records and electronic
diaries in order to find evidence of a meeting of Barclays executives that allegedly happened at the end of July 2012, in which, according to Ashton, the conduct of traders in electronic
chats was discussed.

Judges
argued this is relevant to establishing the company’s attitude towards the
concerns allegedly raised by Ashton.

A second
hearing of the case is scheduled on July 13.

beatrice@profit-loss.com

Twitter@Profit_and_Loss

Beatrice Bedeschi

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