Former RBC FX trader suing bank for £13 million
A senior currency trader fired from Royal Bank of Canada is taking the bank to task at an unfair dismissal hearing that includes accusations of sloppy trading, alleged bribery and an 'incoherent and inconsistent' global FX policy that he claims no one had bothered to read.
John Banerjee was headhunted to work at Royal Bank of Canada (RBC) as an emerging markets trader at director level in June 2015. Just over a year later he was dismissed. He claims this is because he blew the whistle on a number of failings at the bank – which put senior managers’ noses out of joint – and is now suing the bank for £13 million.
Banerjee describes in his witness statement a firm with “no effective systems and controls, particularly in compliance” and that important issues were “swept under the carpet”.
He says: “I can say that my time at RBC was extraordinary and never in my career had I experienced such a divergence between policy on the one hand and practice on the other.”
A bank spokesperson said: “We believe this claim to be without merit and are vigorously defending our position.”
Box-ticking culture Shortly after hiring Banerjee, who has been a trader for more than 20 years, RBC put together a global FX sales and trading policy for all FX employees to sign up to. Following the currency rigging investigation that resulted in billion-dollar fines, investment banks came under pressure to instill codes of conduct to keep traders in check.