Regulation Correspondent, Europe
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Dec 9, 2013

Watchdog warns of chaos in competing derivatives rules

LONDON (Reuters) – Failure to thrash out a common supervision of the $640 trillion global financial derivatives industry will split markets and bump up costs for end users, a top regulator said on Monday.

Banks who trade interest rate swaps, credit default swaps and other derivatives are looking to the United States and the European Union to harmonize their approach to new rules aimed at making markets more transparent.

Dec 5, 2013

Bank of England seeks to opt out from EU bank stress tests

LONDON (Reuters) – The Bank of England wants Britain’s banks to be exempted from a European Union health check next year on the grounds that it will be conducting its own rigorous exam.

The so-called stress tests are carried out by the EU’s banking watchdog the European Banking Authority (EBA) every year, as an ongoing measure to restore market confidence in EU banks after the 2007-09 financial crisis and subsequent euro zone debt crisis.

Dec 4, 2013

Talks on EU law making companies switch auditors put on hold

LONDON, Dec 4 (Reuters) – Negotiations on a European Union
draft law forcing companies to switch accountants about every 10
years are on hold due to disagreements over other planned curbs
on auditors, an EU lawmaker said on Wednesday.

The measure was prompted by the 2007-09 financial crisis
during which taxpayers had to rescue banks that had been given a
clean bill of health by auditors months earlier.

Dec 4, 2013

EU executive document says transaction tax plan legal

LONDON (Reuters) – The proposed tax on financial transactions in 11 European Union countries complies with EU and international laws, the bloc’s executive said, hoping to revive the flagging project.

The tax on stock, bond and derivatives trades has been proposed as a way of raising about 35 billion euros a year from banks starting in 2014 to claw back the taxpayer aid they received in the financial crisis.

Dec 4, 2013

EU to hold marathon talks on new securities law

LONDON (Reuters) – Negotiations over sweeping changes to European Union securities market rules enter what may be the final stretch on Wednesday with several key elements already agreed.

The bloc’s Markets in Financial Instruments Directive or MiFID is being updated to reflect rapid advances in trading technology and apply lessons from the 2007-09 financial crisis to stock, bond and derivatives markets.

Dec 3, 2013

Global regulators expected to ease banking leverage rule: source

LONDON (Reuters) – Global banking regulators are expected to ease a new capital rule due in 2018 to rein in risky balance sheets after U.S. complaints, a European regulatory source said on Tuesday.

The Basel Committee on Banking Supervision published a proposal in June to flesh out a leverage ratio that banks will have to introduce in January 2018.

Dec 3, 2013

Accounting body says loan rule for banks ready in January

LONDON, Dec 3 (Reuters) – An accounting rule forcing banks
to set aside capital far earlier for troubled loans will be
completed next month and start in 2017, a global standard setter
said on Tuesday.

Leaders of 20 major economies (G20) called for the new rule
in 2008 at the height of the financial crisis when taxpayers had
to bail out undercapitalised banks.

Dec 2, 2013

EU watchdog sees failings in sovereign debt ratings process

LONDON (Reuters) – The “Big Three” credit rating agencies that score European Union government debt could be fined after failing to fix poor practices from the past, the sector’s regulator said on Monday.

Credit ratings are a key part of the financial system because investors use them to judge how likely they are to get their money back. But the financial crisis led to unease that the market is relying on them too much.

Nov 29, 2013

UK watchdog eases capital rules for pension risks

LONDON (Reuters) – Britain’s banking regulator has relaxed a new rule determining the quality of assets banks must hold to cover risks from pension liabilities.

The Bank of England’s Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA) had proposed that all the extra capital which comes on top of mandatory minimum buffers, should eventually be in the most expensive form, such as shares or retained earnings.

Nov 29, 2013

Accountant BDO sees mergers in the sector speeding up

LONDON, Nov 29 (Reuters) – Global accountant BDO predicts
rapid consolidation in the sector due to pressure on fees,
regulatory change and big investment costs, that will leave only
a couple of mid-sized firms.

“Within the next five years, we anticipate that the global
consolidation of our profession will gather pace, leaving only
two or three substantial mid-tier networks globally,” BDO Chief
Executive Martin van Roekel told Reuters.

    • 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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