Goldman Sachs fined $800,000 over violations in dark pool pricing

<p>Goldman Sachs has been fined $800,000 (£466,000) for failing to ensure that trades in its dark pool took place at the best price.</p>

The US regulator has given Goldman Sachs an $800,000 (£466,000) fine for failing to ensure that trades in its dark pool took place at the best price, which led to nearly 400,000 mispriced trades.

During an eight-day period in 2011, trades executed in the Sigma X dark pool traded at a price inferior to the best bid in the markets at the time, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority said, adding that the investment banking firm was "unaware" of the issue at the time.

It has stated the company "failed to establish, maintain, and enforce written policies and procedures that were reasonably designed" to prevent trades from being executed at inferior prices.

Dark pools are trading operations which allow clients to trade large blocks of shares while keeping prices private.

Goldman did not admit the allegations

Under US regulations, dark pools and public exchanges are required to give investors the best price available, regardless of where trades are executed.

As part of its settlement, Goldman did not admit or deny the allegations.

The firm has already paid almost $1.67 million to affected clients to compensate them for the trades, the BBC reports.

Goldman Sachs Group was up 0.24 per cent to 167.2100 at 10.44 ET today (July 2nd) in New York.

Meanwhile, the Dow industrials index flirted with the 17,000 milestone and the S&P 500 less than 1.5 per cent from hitting 2,000.

This follows yesterday's jump by US shares in response to strong figures for US auto sales and new data showing Chinese manufacturing activity picking up, with HSBC's final read on the manufacturing Purchasing Managers' Index displaying its first improvement this year.

The Dow climbed 0.77 per cent and the S&P 500 added 0.67 per cent, while the Nasdaq surged 1.14 per cent.

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