The Financial Services Authority (FSA) is readying at least one 'mega fine' in the next three months as figures show it raised significantly less than usual in the first quarter of 2012.
City miscreants are expected to face "an onslaught" from the watchdog over the next three months after the FSA levied just £14.6m in fines in Q1, according to The Independent.
If those figures were extrapolated for the whole year it would point to a total fine count of £58.4m for 2012, which is down sharply on last year's total of £66.1m. That was in itself a steep decline on the £89.1m of fines that were imposed in 2010.
However, The Independent said it has learnt there could be at least one "mega-fine" in the next three months with a number of smaller penalties being lined up.
And the outgoing enforcer-in-chief, Margaret Cole, has warned the City to expect an increase in the level and frequency of fines for misdeeds, with more blockbuster penalties, as the watchdog transitions to the new Financial Conduct Authority.
Will assess regulation
Client was warned of risk
Megan Butler keynote speech at Women in Finance summit
Market anticipates a May hike
Newly-formed Mobius Capital Partners