Barclays Capital, the investment-banking division of Barclays PLC, has run up significant losses trading base metals this year after a series of bets it made on copper, nickel and aluminum turned sour, people familiar with the situation said Thursday. Traders at the London Metal Exchange familiar with Barclays Capital's trading positions said could amount to as much as $500 million. But Barclays denied its trading activity had been "abnormal."' "The reports of big losses are nonsense. There has been no abnormal trading in the commodities business," said Barclays Capital spokeswoman Aurelie Leonard. [WSJ, related]
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