Rogue trader losses in Singapore force Mitsubishi to shut Petro-Diamond

08, Nov. 2019

SINGAPORE, NNA – Major Japanese trading house Mitsubishi Corp. will liquidate its wholly owned oil trading unit in Singapore after suffering a massive $320 million loss in unauthorized crude oil derivative transactions.

Petro-Diamond Singapore (Pte) Ltd. (PDS), which has been operating in the city state for 30 years, was ruined by a rogue employee of Chinese nationality who had repeatedly carried out the illegitimate transactions since January this year.

Mitsubishi plans to transfer part of PDS operations to its Tokyo headquarters. Meanwhile, it is still keeping about 50 employees of the local unit to help fulfil all existing transaction contracts, Masaki Ito, a Mitsubishi spokesman in Tokyo, told NNA in an email on Wednesday.

He was unable to provide details of the liquidation schedule.

The rogue trader, who had been absent from work in August, was fired on September 18, according to a statement by the trading house in September.

Mitsubishi reported a group net loss of 22.1 billion yen ($203 million) in the oil and chemical segment in the April-September period this year caused mainly by the losses at the Singapore subsidiary. This is a stark contrast to the net profit of 22.9 billion yen achieved in the same period of 2018, according to its financial statement released on Wednesday.