Tribunal upholds decision of Financial Conduct Authority to find Ian Hannam guilty of market abuse

Published: 28/05/2014     Last Modified: 28/05/2014

The Upper Tribunal (Tribunal) has upheld the decision of the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) that Ian Hannam engaged in two instances of market abuse.

The judgment was issued by the Tribunal on 27 May 2014 after five days of hearing during July 2013 and October 2013. It remains open to Mr Hannam to appeal this judgement.

The Tribunal found that Mr Hannam had engaged in two instances of market abuse by disclosing inside information other than in the proper course of his employment in two emails dated 9 September and 8 October 2008.

In its decision, The Tribunal commented:

"Mr Hannam’s actions in sending both the September email and the October email constituted behaviour falling within section 118(3) of the Financial Services and Markets Act 5 2000 (“FSMA”). He was thereby engaged in market abuse."

The Tribunal also commented on the standards of behaviour it expected of professional advisers when handling inside information:

"We consider that it could never be in the proper course of a person’s employment for him to disclose inside information to a third party, where he knows that his employer and client would not consent to the public disclosure of that information, unless he knows that the recipient is under a duty of confidentiality and that he knows that the recipient understands that to be the case."

It was not part of the Authority’s case that Mr Hannam deliberately set out to commit market abuse or that Mr Hannam lacked honesty or integrity.

The Tribunal has sought further submissions from Mr Hannam and the Authority on the issue of the appropriate penalty, before reaching a decision on that issue. In the Decision Notice, the Authority decided that it was appropriate to impose a financial penalty of £450,000.

The Tribunal confirmed that the standard of proof applicable in market abuse cases is the civil standard. As well as applying the law on market abuse to the facts of this case, the Tribunal’s decision contains information on market abuse generally, including on the standard of behaviour expected of professional advisers when handling inside information.

Notes for editors

  1. The Tribunal’s judgment.
  2. The Authority published its Decision Notice against Mr Hannam on 3 April 2012.
  3. Section 118(3) of the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000 (FSMA) provides that it is market abuse for an insider to disclose inside information to another person otherwise than in the proper course of the exercise of their employment, profession or duties. Further details of the market abuse regime.
  4. On 1 April 2013 the FCA became responsible for the conduct supervision of all regulated financial firms and the prudential supervision of those not supervised by the Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA).
  5. The FCA has an overarching strategic objective of ensuring the relevant markets function well. To support this it has three operational objectives: to secure an appropriate degree of protection for consumers; to protect and enhance the integrity of the UK financial system; and to promote effective competition in the interests of consumers.
  6. Find out more information about the FCA.

 

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