• Barclays Bank Ghana given $859,000 penalty for FX practices
  • Lender ‘hasn’t been transparent with the central bank’

Ghana’s banking regulator penalized the local unit of Absa Group Ltd. for making “frivolous quotes” on the domestic foreign-exchange market.

The Bank of Ghana fined Barclays Bank of Ghana Ltd. 4.6 million cedis ($859,000) as it seeks to develop practices that will deepen the local market, the regulator said in a
statement on its website.

Barclays “hasn’t been transparent with the central bank,” Steve Opata, director of financial markets at the Bank of Ghana, said by phone. The lender “traded foreign-exchange with a counter-party at a big variance from transaction rates it had agreed with the central bank.”

Cyril Nai, a spokesman for Barclays Ghana, declined to immediately comment when contacted by phone.

Absa’s unit in Ghana continues to trade under the Barclays trademark even though the British bank ceded control of the pan-African lender in 2017.

Absa has until mid-2020 to rebrand its Barclays operations across 11 markets on the continent outside South Africa.

Credit: Bloomberg

(By Ekow Dontoh With assistance by Moses Mozart Dzawu)