Today’s column comes with an apology to Labradors the world over – proof that my readership is made up of nothing if not animal lovers. Away from the unintended slight on man’s best friend, I am bothered by yet another example of what I consider to be weak operational practice. Technology, data and analytics are all good, but they can’t be left to their own devices – someone has to “own” them and either monitor them adequately or take responsibility when things go wrong.
In the Profit & Loss 2018 Digital FX Awards, Barclays was the winner of the “One to Watch in 2018” category and, looking back now at the end of the year, it seems that the bank might be on its way to justifying this decision.
After a couple of years during which there was a clear slowdown in terms of product development within Barclays’ e-FX franchise, the bank appears to be shifting onto the front foot again.
It has made a raft of senior appointments within its FX business this year, with Alex Shterenberg hired as global head of G10 and EM e-FX trading, Jeremy Monnier as a managing director, Fabio Madar as the global head of G10 FX trading and distribution, James Hassett as global head of EM macro trading, and Mauricio Sada-Paz as global head of e-FICC product and distribution.
Few can be surprised that such an increasingly emotive issue such as last look has led to a lawsuit. As someone who has disliked the practice for more than a decade and written about the risks associated with the regular rejecting of trades for more than seven years this class action lawsuit is not surprising – but I cannot help avoid the feeling that this is both someone trying it on, while at the same time it is the worst case scenario for the defendants.