The Financial Services Authority conducted more than 20 police dawn raids last year, according to law firm Reynolds Porter Chamberlain.
The firm says the high number of dawn raids is evidence of the FSA’s increased focus on more conspicuous and heavy-handed enforcement exercises since the start of the credit crunch.
RPC says the regulator averaged some six dawn raids each calendar year from 2005 to 2007.
This increased after the credit crunch hit to an average of 29 dawn raids a year from 2008 to 2011.
Steven Francis, regulatory partner at RPC, says: “This shift in enforcement activity moves the FSA closer to the Securities and Exchange Commission in the US, where enforcement of white collar criminal activity involves a heavy and visible police presence.
“Most dawn raids relate to suspected insider dealing, which the FSA has been clamping down on following criticism for letting too much criminal activity continue unchecked.”