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News digest 27/11/15: Doping in Welsh rugby and Barclays elephant deal

27 November 2015 by Henry Ker

Doping in Welsh rugby and Barclays elephant deal - read more

Doping issues at the heart of Welsh rugby

Steroid abuse is ‘off-the-scale’ in Welsh semi-professional/grassroots rugby, according to a BBC investigation. Alongside this, figures from UK Anti-Doping suggest that Welsh players account for 34% of all sportsmen and women serving drugs bans.

However, Welsh Rugby Union chief Martyn Phillips claims he is not ‘overly concerned’ as the number tested is proportionately higher compared to other rugby unions and sports.

Read more about sport’s doping problem in Peter Swabey’s analysis ‘The real cost of doping’.


Elephant deal costs Barclays £72m

A deal executed in 2011/12 will cost Barclays £72 million in fines from the FCA. The so-called ‘elephant’ deal (a name given to deals worth £20 million or more) was due to be worth almost £1.9 billion and the regulator decided the bank ran the risk of being used to launder money or finance terrorism. The fine is the largest imposed for financial crime failings.

It was the largest deal that Barclays’ wealth management operation had executed, but the FCA found that instead of conducting the proper checks on the clients, Barclays ignored processes, controls and assessments that were supposed to safeguard against financial crime.


Delay for Mifid market rules

Europe’s incoming markets legislation Mifid II is due to be delayed by a whole year. This follows a consensus that it would not be practical to split and delay only parts of the rules. Members of Parliament involved with the legislation have agreed not to block requests from regulators and policymakers, including the European Securities and Markets Authority, to push back the introduction of the rules from January 2017.


Lord Coe severs ties with Nike

The President of the International Amateur Athletics Federation, Lord Sebastian Coe, has announced he is leaving his ambassadorial role with Nike. His connection with the company, believed to be in worth £100,000 a year, has been dogged by questions of conflict of interest.
The decision comes after leaked emails show he discussed his support for Eugene’s successful bid for the 2021 World Athletics Championships with executives from Nike earlier this year.


Governance essential to investment performance

A study has found that financial decision makers believe governance is a fundamental factor in choosing and analysing investments.

The research was conducted by Aberdeen Asset Management study and 300 international financial individuals took part. Nearly 90% of respondents consider effective governance to be a critical driver of the investment’s performance.

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