FSA bans former city worker for performing significant influence function without approval

FSA bans former city worker for performing significant influence function without approval


The Financial Services Authority (FSA) has fined an interdealer broker and banned a ‘consultant’ for performing a significant influence function without the FSA’s approval.

Daniel Hassell has been banned from working in regulated financial services for the functions he performed at Vantage Capital Markets LLP (Vantage). Hassell allegedly performed a ‘significant influence function’ for four years at the firm, despite the fact that he knew the FSA did not believe him to be a ‘fit and proper person’ for the role.

Vantage, an interdealer broker, was formed as a limited liability partnership in 2004 and during Hassell’s time at the firm had three capital partners. Hassell was not one of these partners and had the job title of ‘consultant’.

However, Hassell, who had previously owned the majority of the brokerage business, was still presented as an owner in correspondence and was seen as an owner by some members of staff.

FSA rules stipulate that those performing significant influence functions must be approved persons. Knowing this, Vantage applied for Hassel to be approved as a partner of the firm during its authorisation period. Finding that Hassel was the subject of an FSA investigation, Vantage withdrew the application.

A similar sequence of events occurred in February 2007, when Vantage applied again for Hassell to be approved. After the FSA indicated that Hassell would not be approved due to issues relating to the investigation though, Vantage withdrew the application.

Yet despite both the firm and Hassell himself being aware that he was not and would not be approved, he continued to exercise a role where he could exert significant influence.  

Margaret Cole, managing director of enforcement and financial crime at the FSA, said: “Hassell acted in a significant influence role without FSA approval. This was despite the fact that he knew that the FSA did not regard him as a suitable person to manage the firm. 


“Ensuring that the right people are running firms is a key element in our regulatory regime. Individuals who act without FSA approval can expect a tough response from the FSA.” 


In June 2010, the FSA fined Vantage £700,000 (after stage one discount) and yesterday announced that Hassell would be banned from working in regulated financial services.

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