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Watchdog fines London banker for sharing client info over WhatsApp

Staff Writer |
A City banker at U.S. firm Jefferies International was fined by the City watchdog for sharing confidential client information over WhatsApp.

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Christopher Niehaus, who was a managing director in the investment banking division at Jefferies in London, shared information he had gleaned from clients with one friend and another acquaintance.

The Financial Conduct Authority said Niehaus had shared details about a company that was a competitor of his friend.

"The information was shared by Mr Niehaus because he wanted to impress the people that he shared the information with," the FCA said, with one boast about "how he may be able to pay off his mortgage if one of the deals was successful".

South African Niehaus, was suspended from Jefferies pending the completion of its disciplinary process and has since resigned, shared not only the identity of his client but also details relating to its mandate and the fee Jefferies would charge for their involvement in the transaction.

As he provided the regulator with a full admission he was given a 15% reduction to the £53,140 financial penalty, so he will only pay £37,198.

Niehaus joined Jefferies from UBS, where he was head of industrials investment banking.

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