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FCA probes HBOS impaired assets team after police convictions

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The FCA is investigating potential misconduct at Halifax Bank of Scotland’s impaired assets team.

The regulator put its enquiries on hold in 2013 as Thames Valley Police pursued criminal prosecutions over allegations that HBOS bank employees and private business advisers had exploited struggling business by recommending they bought services from high priced external consultants with links to the bank in order to get loans.

The six-year investigation resulted in six jail sentences in January encompassing corruption, fraudulent trading and money laundering offences, which the police said resulted in the offenders “profiting from hundreds of millions of pounds at the expense of businesses and a high street bank and its customers”

The FCA will now relaunch its inquiry into the Reading-based HBOS team.

The regulator said in a statement this morning: “The FCA’s investigation is focusing on the extent and nature of the knowledge of these matters within HBOS and its communications with the Financial Services Authority after the initial discovery of the misconduct.

“This statement is made given the public interest in these matters.”

No further detail was provided by the regulator.

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