FCA to probe possible conflicts in barrier options

Some buy-side firms avoid illiquid underlyings over manipulation risks

FCA headquarters

UK regulators are to examine potential market manipulation in relation to foreign exchange digital and barrier options – a risk some buy-side firms seek to avoid by only trading barriers on liquid, abuse-proof underlyings.

The UK Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) handed out fines totalling £1.1 billion ($1.7 billion) to five banks on November 12, for failing to control their G10 spot forex business, but said it would also conduct a wider investigation of how firms manage conflicts of interest

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