The Serious Fraud Office (SFO) has requested an October hearing to have its case against Barclays (LON:BARC) reinstated, The Sunday Times has reported. The news comes after it emerged last month that the government was seeking to reinstate charges against the lender over its Qatar fundraising during the financial crisis.
Barclays’ share price surged in the previous session, adding 1.16 percent to close at 188.70p, largely in line with the broader market rally, with the benchmark FTSE 100 index ending the session 1.10 percent higher at 7,659.10 points. The group’s shares have lost a little over 10 percent of their value over the past year, as compared with about a 2.5-percent gain in the Footsie.
SFO requests October hearing
The Sunday Times reported yesterday that the SFO had requested an October hearing to have its case against Barclays reinstated, or three months before four former directors go on trial. It is understood, however, that the October date has not yet been confirmed, while the lender has said that it would defend itself against the fresh charges.
The SFO brought criminal charges against the bank last year following a five-year investigation into Barclays’ emergency fundraising from Qatar during the financial crisis which helped the lender avoid a state-funded bailout. While the Crown Court dismissed the charges earlier this year, the government agency applied to the High Court last month, seeking to reinstate charges.
Analysts on blue-chip lender
Berenberg Bank, which sees Barclays as ‘neutral,’ set a price target on the shares of 200p on Friday, while Deutsche Bank, which rates the lender as a ‘buy,’ hiked its valuation on the stock from 236p to 239p. According to MarketBeat, the FTSE 100 bank currently has a consensus ‘buy’ rating and an average price target of 226.67p.