Fines imposed on the City have fallen to their lowest level since before the financial crisis, new research reveals.
Around £22.2million of penalties were levied by City regulator the Financial Conduct Authority in 2016 – a huge fall from £905.2million last year.
In 2007, the eve of the banking crisis, firms were fined just £5.3million. The record year was in 2014 when more than £1.5billion was levied on financial firms.
The lower fines have coincided with the appointment of former Bank of England deputy Andrew Bailey as the head of the FCA in July.
He replaced Martin Wheatley, who had been brought in after the financial crisis as a reformer who sided with consumers.
However, while he was credited with dealing with a number of the toxic issues of the past that beset the industry, he was criticised for being too tough on the banks and preventing them from building their business for the future.
A spokesman for the FCA said: ‘The level of fines reflects the degree of misconduct in our market and so a reduction of fines should be viewed as a positive.’