Regulation Correspondent, Europe
Huw's Feed
Jul 7, 2014

EU regulators to use common scorecard to measure bank risks

LONDON (Reuters) – European Union banking supervisors will use a common “scorecard” from 2016 to check if lenders can stay in business, use reliable IT systems and hold enough capital to pay potential fines, the bloc’s main sector regulator said on Monday.

The proposed scorecard is part of a welter of reforms in the banking sector intended to shield taxpayers from having to rescue lenders, as they had to in the 2008-09 financial crisis.

Jul 4, 2014

EU banks watchdog advises lenders to shun bitcoins

LONDON, July 4 (Reuters) – Banks in the European Union
should refrain from offering customer accounts in virtual
currencies like bitcoins until regulatory safeguards are in
place, the bloc’s banking watchdog said on Friday.

The EU’s executive European Commission responded by saying
it was imperative to look quickly at possible regulation.

Jul 3, 2014

A capital markets union could be next thing in EU’s in-tray

LONDON, July 3 (Reuters) – The European Union may seek to
tighten its grip over financial markets to help find funds to
boost economic growth, a move that could stoke anti-EU sentiment
in Britain, the EU’s largest financial centre.

Bankers and policymakers say capital markets union is seen
as a logical step after the euro zone completes banking union.

Jul 3, 2014

Barclays sets up academy to improve training, culture

LONDON, July 3 (Reuters) – Barclays, trying to
restore its reputation after a series of scandals, has created a
Compliance Career Academy in partnership with Cambridge
University to improve staff training.

Barclays was the first bank to be fined for the alleged
rigging of benchmark interest rates, which resulted in a $450
million fine and cost Bob Diamond, the bank’s CEO at the time,
his job. It was fined 26 million pounds ($44.24 million) in May
this year for manipulating gold prices, and last week New York’s
attorney general filed a lawsuit alleging fraud in its “dark
pool” trading venue.

Jul 3, 2014

A capital markets union could be next in EU in-tray

LONDON, July 3 (Reuters) – The European Union may seek to
tighten its grip over markets to help find funds for economic
growth – a move that could stoke anti-EU sentiment in Britain,
the EU’s largest financial centre.

Bankers and policymakers say that while the idea of a
capital markets union is embryonic, it is seen as a logical step
after the euro zone completes its milestone banking union.

Jul 2, 2014

UK watchdog says no evidence that gold price is rigged

LONDON, July 2 (Reuters) – Collusion among banks in setting
the gold price benchmark was possible but there is no evidence
of this, a senior British regulator said on Wednesday when
answering lawmakers’ questions on the trustworthiness of the
gold market.

Gold prices and other benchmarks have come under scrutiny,
with banks fined $6 billion for rigging the Libor interest rate,
used to price a range of financial products. Allegations are
also emerging of potential rigging of currency markets.

Jul 1, 2014

Bank of England studies fallout from annuities reform

LONDON, July 1 (Reuters) – The Bank of England (BoE) is
asking insurers how they can stay in business after the British
government scrapped a rule forcing people to buy their most
successful product, an annuity pension.

Finance minister George Osborne stunned Britain’s pensions
industry in March when he announced the rule change, the biggest
reform of pensions in a generation to give savers a choice on
how to use money saved during their working lives.

Jul 1, 2014

EU bank watchdog backs keeping low capital charges on covered bonds

LONDON, July 1 (Reuters) – EU banking regulators have backed
the low capital treatment of top quality covered bonds against
the risk of default, a boost for Denmark and other major players
in the 2.8 trillion euro ($3.8 trillion) global market.

Covered bonds are debt backed by pools of home or commercial
property loans, and 90 percent of the global market is based in
Europe, especially in Denmark, Germany, Spain, France and
Sweden.

Jul 1, 2014

Bank of England policymakers differed over mortgage lending cap

LONDON, July 1 (Reuters) – Bank of England policymakers
differed last month over how best to stop home-buyers from
borrowing too much, as they tried to reduce the risks from
rapidly rising house prices and high levels of debt.

A record of their June 17 meeting released on Tuesday also
revealed for the first time discussions between the BoE and
Britain’s finance ministry dating back to September 2011 over
how to protect against the risk of a euro zone break-up.

Jun 30, 2014

EU’s Almunia aims to wrap up remaining rate-fixing cases by October

LONDON, June 30 (Reuters) – Europe’s antitrust chief said on
Monday that he aimed to wrap up the remaining interest rate
rigging cases against HSBC, JPMorgan, Credit
Agricole and brokerage ICAP before he leaves
office in October.

In May, the European Commission charged HSBC – Europe’s
biggest bank – alongside U.S. peer JPMorgan and France’s Credit
Agricole with rigging benchmark interest rates linked to the
euro, five months after handing down a record 1.7-billion-euro
fine against six other financial institutions for Euribor and
Libor offences.

    • About Huw

      "Huw is based in London and covers European regulatory issues and global rulemaking bodies such as the G20, Financial Stability Board, IOSCO, IASB and the Basel Committee. He has covered EU regulation in Brussels, the emergence pan-European stock markets, and has also been a Wall Street reporter in New York."
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