In the middle of March 2021, the SFSA started an investigation about Nordnet’s internal routines and processes regarding intraday short-selling. The background is the intraday short-selling transactions carried out by customers of Nordnet in Moment Group AB on 19 February 2021. As a part of the investigation process, the SFSA opened a sanction case at the end of last year, which resulted in Nordnet receiving a remark and an administrative fine of SEK 100 million.
Nordnet has now appealed the decision to the Administrative Court in Stockholm.
– Our view is that the administrative fine is far too high, and we therefore want a court to assess the correctness of the decision made by the SFSA. The way we see it, there are a number of circumstances that call for a lower fee. First, we believe that the amount is disproportionate to the severity of the event that occurred. We have had one single incident of so-called naked short-selling and no customer has suffered any financial damage. We also think that the amount is too high compared to fines that have been issued to other Swedish banks. Furthermore, we reported the incident to the SFSA at our own initiative, implemented improvements in our processes in connection with our report, and actively co-operated with the authority throughout the process. There were no intentional actions or attempts to conceal any circumstances on our part in this matter. Finally, we question SFSA’s interpretation of regulations around short-selling and would like the court’s assessment of whether it is applicable in the way it is stated in their decision, says Lars-Åke Norling, CEO of Nordnet.
– We do not appeal the entire decision, but only the part concerning the sanction amount. I would like to emphasize that we do not think it is unreasonable for the SFSA to carry out an investigation of the incident. We discovered ourselves that we needed to improve our routines regarding intraday short-selling, and also informed the SFSA about this. We do not question the decision to issue some form of sanction, and do not object to the remark that has been issued. However, we do not think that the amount is proportional to the incident that has occurred, and that is the part that our appeal will cover, says Lars-Åke Norling, CEO of Nordnet.