Conflict of Interest posed by Butlers Sector advice re: LIBOR and Barnet finances.

The request was partially successful.

Dear Barnet Borough Council,

In 2007 Barnet Council received investment advice from Treasury Management Advisors Sector (a subsidiary of Capita) and Butlers (a subsidiary of ICAP) to invest in Icelandic banks chasing high returns.

The Council subsequently invested £27.4m of public money earmarked for schools, which became frozen in Icelandic banks, resulting in the sacking of the council finance officer and questions being raised of now MP Mike Freer, in an episode considered less than glorious for the reputation of council.

http://www.times-series.co.uk/search/419...

Following the Icelandic inquiry, a 2009 CLG select committee found kickbacks were being paid between Butlers and broker ICAP for advice resulting in Council deposits.

http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa...

Subsequent to this inquiry, Bulters and Sector have merged in a deal referred to the UK competition commission.

In 2013, broker ICAP run by former Tory Treasurer and CEO Michael Spencer was fined £55m for rigging the LIBOR rate, which underpins billions of pounds of local authority pensions and investments. ICAP is under yet futher investigation for rigging of the swaps market "ISDAfix."

Given Butlers at the time of LIBOR rigging (2005-20012) was a subsidiary of ICAP - who we now know were rigging LIBOR, do you deem it appropriate that Sector (who subsequently bought out Butlers), should be in a position to advise Barnet Council regarding possible LIBOR losses?, as per FOI ref 310364 when Sector would inherit any financial responsibility arising from any legal legacy issues resulting from Butlers - ICAP involvement in the LIBOR rigging debacle?

1. Please confirm whether Sector/ICAP/Butlers/Capita have declared a possible conflict of interest with Council, as to matters arising from ICAPs involvement in LIBOR rigging, and the potential association of former subsidiary firm Butlers.

2. Please confirm whether councils auditors or solicitors have flagged up the potential conflicts of interest arising from Sector advising Barnet re: LIBOR rigging issues at Council within a risk register?, and if so what steps the Council has taken to manage the potential conflict, which is particularly problematic given subsequent One Barnet council outsourcing to Sector parent company Capita.

I look forward yo your response.

Yours faithfully,

Joel Benjamin

 
Information request
Our reference: 559564

--------------------------------------------------------------------------

Dear Mr Benjamin
 
Freedom of Information Act 2000

Thank you for your request, received by us on  4 December 2013, for the
following information:

 

In 2007 Barnet Council received investment advice from Treasury Management
Advisors Sector (a subsidiary of Capita) and Butlers (a subsidiary of
ICAP) to invest in Icelandic banks chasing high returns.

The Council subsequently invested £27.4m of public money earmarked for
schools, which became frozen in Icelandic banks, resulting in the sacking
of the council finance officer and questions being raised of now MP Mike
Freer, in an episode considered less than glorious for the reputation of
council.

http://www.times-series.co.uk/search/419...

Following the Icelandic inquiry, a 2009 CLG select committee found
kickbacks were being paid between Butlers and broker ICAP for advice
resulting in Council deposits.

http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa...

Subsequent to this inquiry, Bulters and Sector have merged in a deal
referred to the UK competition commission.

In 2013, broker ICAP run by former Tory Treasurer and CEO Michael Spencer
was fined £55m for rigging the LIBOR rate, which underpins billions of
pounds of local authority pensions and investments. ICAP is under yet
futher investigation for rigging of the swaps market "ISDAfix."

Given Butlers at the time of LIBOR rigging (2005-20012) was a subsidiary
of ICAP - who we now know were rigging LIBOR, do you deem it appropriate
that Sector (who subsequently bought out Butlers), should be in a position
to advise Barnet Council regarding possible LIBOR losses?, as per FOI ref
310364 when Sector would inherit any financial responsibility arising from
any legal legacy issues resulting from Butlers - ICAP involvement in the
LIBOR rigging debacle?

1. Please confirm whether Sector/ICAP/Butlers/Capita have declared a
possible conflict of interest with Council, as to matters arising from
ICAPs involvement in LIBOR rigging, and the potential association of
former subsidiary firm Butlers.

2. Please confirm whether councils auditors or solicitors have flagged up
the potential conflicts of interest arising from Sector advising Barnet
re: LIBOR rigging issues at Council within a risk register?, and if so
what steps the Council has taken to manage the potential conflict, which
is particularly problematic given subsequent One Barnet council
outsourcing to Sector parent company Capita.

 

We are processing this request under the Freedom of Information Act 2000. 
 
Under the Act we must respond promptly and in any event within 20 working
days from the date we received your request. You should receive a response
by 7 January 2014

 

Please note the Act defines a limited set of exemptions from the right to
know.  If we decide not to release any information we shall explain why,
which exemption we are relying on and how you can appeal.

 

 

Yours sincerely
 
 
Jon Hill
Information Governance Officer
Information Management Team
London Borough of Barnet, North London Business Park, Oakleigh Road South,
London N11 1NP
Barnet Online: [1]www.barnet.gov.uk
Please consider the environment - do you really need to print this email?
 

 

References

Visible links
1. http://www.barnet.gov.uk/

John Dix left an annotation ()

Dear Mr Benjamin, Thank you for raising this issue. You may already know that although the One Barnet contract has been published, large elements were redacted. In particular, the clause that deals with conflicts of interest was redacted specifically at the request of Capita. They stated, "This schedule was developed by Capita to address a contract consideration and reflects a detailed approach within Capita to manage conflict of interest considerations. This forms part of the Capita business systems and therefore was provided in confidence as part of the evaluation process, and should not therefore be disclosed." I look forward to reading the response you receive with interest.
Mr Reasonable.

Dear Jon Hill,

It is my understanding that a FOI response re: potential conflict of interest posed by Butlers and Sector advice to Barnet Council re: Libor riggings impact on council finances was due c.o.b yesterday.

Please confirm when I can expect a response from Barnet.

Yours sincerely,

Joel Benjamin

Hill, Jon, Barnet Borough Council

Dear Mr Benjamin,

 

The 20 working day due date for this case is today. I have contacted the
directorate which holds this information and asked them to provide the
data this afternoon at the very latest. I hope to have a response  ready
for you by close of business.

 

Yours sincerely,

 

Jon Hill

Information Governance Officer

Information Management Team

London Borough of Barnet, North London Business Park,

Oakleigh Road South, London N11 1NP

Tel: 020 8359 7072

Barnet Online: [1]www.barnet.gov.uk

Please consider the environment - do you really need to print this email?

 

From: [email address] [mailto:[email address]]
Sent: 07 January 2014 08:24
To: Hill, Jon
Subject: Email from [FOI #187899 email] received on
07/01/2014 - Investment Matters (ref: 559564)

 

Dear Jon Hill,

It is my understanding that a FOI response re: potential conflict of
interest posed by Butlers and Sector advice to Barnet Council re: Libor
riggings impact on council finances was due c.o.b yesterday.

Please confirm when I can expect a response from Barnet.

Yours sincerely,

Joel Benjamin

This email and any attachments to it are intended solely for the
individual to whom it is addressed. It may contain sensitive or
confidential material and should be handled accordingly. However, it is
recognised that, as an intended recipient of this email, you may wish to
share it with those who have a legitimate interest in the contents.

If you have received this email in error and you are not the intended
recipient you must not disclose, distribute, copy or print any of the
information contained or attached within it, all copies must be deleted
from your system. Please notify the sender immediately.

Whilst we take reasonable steps to identify software viruses, any
attachments to this email may contain viruses which our anti-virus
software has failed to identify. No liability can be accepted, and you
should therefore carry out your own anti-virus checks before opening any
documents.

Please note: Information contained in this e-mail may be subject to public
disclosure under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 or the Environmental
Information Regulations 2004.

References

Visible links
1. file:///Documents%20and%20Settings/Jonathan.T-Wright.LBBARNET/Desktop/www.barnet.gov.uk

1 Attachment

 
Information request
Our reference: 559564

--------------------------------------------------------------------------

Dear Mr Benjamin
 
Thank you for your request for information received on 4 December 2013.
 
Please find attached our response to your request.
 
Yours sincerely
 
 
Jon Hill
Information Governance Officer
Information Management Team
London Borough of Barnet, North London Business Park, Oakleigh Road South,
London N11 1NP
Barnet Online: [1]www.barnet.gov.uk
Please consider the environment - do you really need to print this email?
 

References

Visible links
1. http://www.barnet.gov.uk/

Looking for an EU Authority?

You can request documents directly from EU Institutions at our sister site AskTheEU.org . Find out more .

AskTheEU.org