The material on this site is for financial institutions, professional investors and their professional advisers. It is for information only. Please read our Terms & Conditions, Privacy Policy and Cookies before using this site. Please see our Subscription Terms and Conditions.

All material subject to strictly enforced copyright laws. © 2022 Euromoney, a part of the Euromoney Institutional Investor PLC.

Citi’s trader firings reflect tougher regulators

Authorities are being more proactive in uncovering trouble.


Citi’s decision to sack eight Hong Kong traders, for being a principal in trades while saying it was only an agent, should be seen in the context of greater strength among Asia-Pacific regulators.

Citi’s action followed an internal review rather than any Securities and Futures Commission penalty, but the regulator did indirectly have a hand in its detection.

Specifically, equity traders had used Citi’s own balance sheet on the other side of client trades. Those clients understood the bank was only acting as an agent – matching orders between clients – when in fact Citi’s position made it a principal.

Citi found the behaviour in an internal review of cash equities execution in Hong Kong and acted quickly: eight traders were fired, three more suspended, and then other staff moved on to the desk to keep business moving.

Citi’s swift action, and its review in the first place, reflect a marketplace in which banks are far more wary of the SFC than they used to be. UBS’s loss of the right to sponsor Hong Kong listings is the most obvious example, but the regulator has also reprimanded (and modestly fined) Standard Chartered, Morgan Stanley and Bank of America Merrill Lynch, as well as Citi itself last year.

You have reached premium content. Please log in to continue reading.

Read beyond the headlines with Euromoney

For over 50 years, our readers have looked to Euromoney to stay informed about the issues that matter in the international banking and financial markets. Find out more about our different levels of access below.


Unlimited access to and

Expert comment, long reads and in-depth analysis interviews with senior finance professionals

Access the results of our market-leading annual surveys across core financial services

Access the results of our annual awards, including the world-renowned Awards for Excellence

Your print copy of Euromoney magazine delivered monthly

£73.75 per month

Billed Annually


Unlimited access to and, including our top stories, long reads, expert analysis, and the results of our annual surveys and awards

Sign up to any of our newsletters, curated by our editors


Already a user?

We use cookies to provide a personalized site experience.
By continuing to use & browse the site you agree to our Privacy Policy.
I agree