Financial Conduct Authority
FCA fines and prohibits hedge fund Chief Investment Officer for market abuse
The FCA has fined Corrado Abbattista, formerly a portfolio manager, partner and Chief Investment Officer at Fenician Capital Management LLP, £100,000 for market abuse and prohibited him from performing any functions in relation to regulated activity.
Following an investigation, the FCA found that Mr Abbattista, an experienced trader, engaged in market abuse by creating a false and misleading impression as to the supply and demand for equities between 20 January and 15 May 2017.
Mark Steward, Executive Director of Enforcement and Market Oversight, yesterday said:
“Market manipulation is corrosive of market integrity, undermining clean, efficient and fair markets. The FCA has increased its capability to detect and take robust action against the harm to shareholder value caused by such abuse.”
On multiple occasions, Mr Abbattista placed large misleading orders for Contracts for Difference (CFDs), referenced to equities, which he did not intend to execute. At the same time, he placed smaller orders that he did intend to execute on the opposite side of the order book to the misleading orders. Through his large misleading orders, Mr Abbattista falsely represented to the market an intention to buy/sell when his true intention was the opposite.
Mr Abbattista was aware of the risk that his actions might constitute market manipulation, but recklessly went ahead with those actions anyway.
The trading undertaken by Mr Abbattista was identified by the FCA’s internal surveillance systems. The FCA ingests order book data from the leading UK equity trading venues and then runs surveillance algorithms, designed to identify potentially abusive behaviours, across that consolidated data set.
Mr Abbattista referred this matter to the Upper Tribunal, but his reference was withdrawn on 10 November 2020.
The FCA considers that the fine and the prohibition imposed reflect the serious nature of the breach set out in the Final Notice and should act as a deterrent to other market participants.
Notes to Editors
- Final Notice for Corrado Abbattista (PDF)
- Contract for difference (CFD) is an agreement between a customer and a financial institution, where the difference in value of a specified asset at the beginning and end of the contract is exchanged. To trade in these products a customer need only deposit a small percentage of the value of the contract. In the case of equities, these products allow customers to speculate on share price movement without the need to buy the underlying shares.
- Decision Notice for Corrado Abbattista (PDF)
- Find out more about the FCA.
Latest News from
Financial Conduct Authority
FCA censures Premier FX for payment rule breaches26/02/2021 11:05:00
The FCA has publicly censured Premier FX Limited (Premier FX) for failing to safeguard its customers’ money and for misuse of its payment accounts under the Payments Services Regulations. In doing so, Premier FX seriously misled its customers about the services it was authorised to provide and how it held customers’ money.
The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) makes senior appointments to drive its transformation25/02/2021 14:10:00
As part of its transformation programme to build a data-led regulator able to make fast and effective decisions, the FCA announced a restructure in December.
FCA responds to High Court decision to stay proceedings in enforcement case24/02/2021 15:25:00
The Claimants issued a judicial review to challenge a decision by the FCA’s Regulatory Decisions Committee not to stay the regulatory proceedings against the first Claimant.
FCA returns funds to victims of unauthorised deposit taking and collective investment schemes24/02/2021 14:10:00
The FCA has obtained High Court Approval to return £3.42 million to compensate victims of a series of unauthorised deposit taking and collective investment schemes.
FCA launches guidance for firms on the fair treatment of vulnerable customers24/02/2021 10:25:00
The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has published final guidance clarifying its expectations of firms on the fair treatment of vulnerable customers.
FCA commences criminal proceedings against brothers for insider dealing and fraud16/02/2021 15:20:00
Following an investigation by the Financial Conduct Authority, the FCA has commenced criminal proceedings against Mohammed Zina and Suhail Zina.
FCA commences criminal proceedings against two for insider dealing12/02/2021 10:15:00
The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has commenced a criminal prosecution against Stuart Bayes and Jonathan Swann for insider dealing.
FCA launches High Court proceedings against Paul Steel and Jacqueline Foster10/02/2021 09:15:00
The FCA has commenced civil proceedings in the High Court against Paul Steel and Jacqueline Foster.
FCA secures interim restitution order against illegal deposit takers04/02/2021 10:25:00
The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has secured an interim restitution order of just over £676,000 against 5 of the 7 defendants accused of carrying on unauthorised deposit taking by accepting money for projects including forex-trading and crypto-assets without FCA authorisation.