UBS, the Swiss bank, was aware of problems with Kweku Adoboli's trading five weeks before he was arrested, a court was told on Tuesday. The bank's back office questioned €3.6bn (£2.9bn) of incorrectly booked trades as early as August 4, Southwark Crown Court heard in the trial of the former trader accused of losing his bank $2.3bn in rogue trades. The trades, normally booked on the same day, remained unregistered weeks after Mr Adoboli made them. Yesterday, the court heard how he himself had lost £123,000 spread-betting through a personal account with IG index. His trading with IG Index prompted two official warnings from his bank bosses after he failed to disclose the account and then failed to disclose individual trades. The court heard on Monday how Mr Adoboli owed thousands of pounds on current accounts and credit cards despite earning £360,000 and was overdrawn and relying on pay-day loan companies when he was arrested. Despite seeing £233,000 pass through his NatWest Bank account in the 12 months prior to his arrest Mr Adoboli’s account was overdrawn by £3,594 when he was arrested on September 15 last year, the court was told. Across his four banks accounts and two credit cards the 32-year-old trader owed £4,181. His primary current account showed payments to eight pay-day loan companies including Wageday Advance, Wonga.com, Payday UK and Pounds to Pocket. [Telegraph]
Reader Poll: What Is The Appropriate Way To Close A Letter Informing Your Employer You've Lost It A Couple Billion Dollars?
"Regards"? "Best wishes"? "Very yours truly"? "Sincerely"? "All the best"? "Love"? "Again, really sorry"? "Well I guess I'll take off now"? "It's been a pleasure working with you"? "TTYL"? "Keep in touch"? Kweku Adoboli, UBS's alleged rogue trader, who does sound genuinely sorry for the "shit storm" he brought on the bank, went with "thanks." Via the FT: “Dear Will It is with great stress that I write this mail. First of all the ETF [exchange traded funds] trades that you see on the ledger are not trades that I have done with a counterparty as I have previously described. I used the bookings as a way to suppress the PnL losses that I accrued through off book trades that I made. Those trades were previously profit making, became loss making as the market sold off aggressively through the aggressive sell-off days of July and early August. Initially, I had been short futures through June and those lost money when the first Greek confidence vote went through in mid June. In order to try and make the money back I flipped the trade long through the rally. Although I had a couple of opportunities to unwind the long trade for negligible loss, I did not move quickly enough for the market weakness on the back of the first back macro data and then an escalation eurozone crisis cost me the losses you will see when the ETF bookings are cancelled. The aim had been to try and make the money back before the September expiry date came through but I clearly failed. These are still live trades on the book that will need to be unwound. Namely a short position in DAX futures [which had been rolled to December expiry] and a short position in S&P500 futures that are due to expire on Friday. I have now left the office for the sake of discretion. I will need to come back in to discuss the positions and explain face to face, but for reasons that are obvious, I did not think it wise to stay on the desk this afternoon. I will expect that questions will be asked as to why nobody was aware of these trades. The reality is that I have maintained that these were EFP [exchange for physical] trades to the member of my team, BUC [the accounts department], trade support and John Di Bacco. I take responsibility for my actions and the shit storm that will now ensue. I am deeply sorry to have left this mess for everyone and to have put my bank and my colleagues at risk. Thanks, Kweku.” Transcript Of UBS Trader's 'Bombshell Email' [FT]
Kweku Adoboli Is A Free Man!
Kind of! Though he doesn't go to trial until September, the UBS's rogue trader was granted bail after ten months in jail and a February denial to go home. Naturally, he's pretty pleased about the turn of events (which allow for sleepovers). Mr. Adoboli, 32, has to stick to a curfew but can stay at a friend’s house wearing an electronic tag as part of the bail agreement. Tim Harris, Mr. Adoboli’s lawyer at Bark & Company, said his client was “delighted” and would like to thank family and friends for their support in achieving his release. Mr. Adoboli is expected to be released from London’s Wandsworth prison as early as Monday, Mr. Harris said. Mr. Adoboli had pleaded not guilty to counts of false accounting and fraud. He was arrested in September after UBS alerted the police. The bank claimed that Mr. Adoboli had masked the billion dollar losses from internal controls with fictitious trades. Mr. Adoboli has remained in custody ever since his arrest. The trading scandal rocked the Swiss bank and led to the resignation of its chief executive, Oswald J. Grübel. Denying Mr. Adoboli bail in February, the judge said that the allegations against the former trader were “serious” and “backed up with cogent evidence.” Former UBS Trader Is Granted Bail [Dealbook]
In Retrospect, Kweku Adoboli Probably Should've Taken Down The Whole Bank And Evaded Arrest For A While
In terms of speaking gigs, do you want to hear from the guy who cost UBS a couple billion or the fugitive who brought it to its knees?
Kweku Adoboli's Colleague Couldn't Help But Admire The Cojones It Took To Lose UBS $2 Billion
Not everyone would have the balls, but Adobli did and for that he deserved props.