Regulation Correspondent, Europe
Huw's Feed
Sep 25, 2013

No housing bubble, but Bank of England says it is watching closely

LONDON (Reuters) – The Bank of England said on Wednesday there was no immediate danger of a property bubble in Britain but that it was keeping a watchful eye out.

It also said it wanted more study on how vulnerable hedge funds that rely on borrowing would be to future interest rate rises.

Sep 25, 2013

Top banks have 115 billion euro capital shortfall, most in Europe

LONDON (Reuters) – The world’s biggest banks would need to boost their capital by 115 billion euros ($155 billion) to comply with tougher rules and more than 60 percent of that shortfall is in Europe, where lenders have been slower to strengthen.

The capital shortfall fell by 83 billion euros during the second half of last year as banks retained more of their profits and raised capital, although the pace of improvement was not as quick in Europe as elsewhere.

Sep 25, 2013

Top EU banks have Basel capital shortfall of 70 billion euros

LONDON (Reuters) – The top 42 banks in the European Union would need an extra 70.4 billion euros ($95 billion) of capital to comply with new rules that take full effect in 2019, the bloc’s banking watchdog said on Wednesday.

Markets and regulators have been putting pressure on banks to move early to comply with the new global Basel III accord being phased in, to dispel any doubts about their ability to thrive and encourage investors to buy their bonds and shares.

Sep 24, 2013

Bank stress tests must bite this time-EU official

LONDON, Sept 24 (Reuters) – The toughest health check
planned so far for European banks must be rigorous enough to
stop the region’s lenders being more lowly rated than their
American rivals, a senior European Union official said on

The European Central Bank (ECB) is preparing a so-called
asset quality review of the 130 euro-zone based banks it will
directly supervise from October 2014, including the likes of
Deutsche Bank, Societe Generale and

Sep 20, 2013

EU watchdog says new short-selling rules not harmful

LONDON, Sept 20 (Reuters) – Banning bets on falling share
prices in the European Union has not damaged prices or ramped up
volatility on stock markets, the bloc’s securities regulator
said on Friday, largely refuting market players’ concerns.

Curbs on so-called short-selling of government debt have,
however, hit turnover in a few cases, according to the European
Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) in its first study of
new EU short-selling rules.

Sep 19, 2013

CFTC’s Gensler says Libor overhaul will take time

LONDON, Sept 19 (Reuters) – A top U.S. regulator stepped
back from previous calls to scrap the Libor interbank lending
rate, saying instead that reform needed to be led at a global
level and would take time.

Gary Gensler, chairman of the Commodity Futures Trading
Commission, has said in the past that the London Interbank
Offered Rate – which is set daily by the banks themselves and
has been the subject of a major rate-rigging scandal – should be
abandoned straight away. Those comments sparked worry about
market upheavals: Libor prices over $300 trillion in products
globally, from home loans to credit cards.

Sep 19, 2013

Swaps trade body to reform ISDAfix from 2014

LONDON, Sept 19 (Reuters) – The world’s top swaps trade
body, whose ISDAfix benchmark is being investigated by
regulators on both sides of the Atlantic for possible
manipulation, is to reform the market yardstick next year.

Benchmarks help price financial products worth trillions of
dollars around the world but are under the regulatory spotlight
after three banks were fined $2.6 billion for rigging the London
Interbank Offered Rate or Libor.

Sep 17, 2013

EU lags U.S. in tools to let big banks fail: Bank of England’s Tucker

LONDON (Reuters) – The United States has largely cracked the problem of protecting taxpayers from the danger of having to bail out banks that are “too big to fail” while Europe lags behind, Bank of England Deputy Governor Paul Tucker said.

Allowing large banks to fail without the massive disruption seen when Lehman Brothers collapsed five years ago this week has been the ambition of policymakers after governments had to rescue many lenders in the 2007-09 financial crisis.

Sep 17, 2013

ECB starts outlining test for top euro zone banks

LONDON (Reuters) – The European Central Bank’s upcoming assessments of bank balance sheets should include in-depth details on their government bond holdings to be credible, one of the central bank’s top policymakers said on Tuesday.

The ECB will directly supervise 130 top euro zone lenders like Deutsche Bank, Societe Generale and Santander from October 22, 2014 and wants to make sure they are adequately capitalized before taking up the reins.

Sep 12, 2013

EU watchdog should not have power to ban short-selling

LONDON, Sept 12 (Reuters) – The power of the European
Union’s Paris-based market watchdog to ban short-selling in any
member state should be annulled, an adviser to the EU’s top
court said in an opinion that will please Britain which brought
the case.

Britain had argued that such a power, part of a new EU law
introduced last year, went beyond what the watchdog could do
under the EU treaty.

    • 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."
    • Follow Huw