Government Bonds Correspondent
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Nov 22, 2013

British police arrest former Co-op Bank chairman in drugs investigation

LONDON (Reuters) – British police have arrested the former chairman of the Co-operative Bank as part of an investigation into the supply of illegal drugs, ratcheting up pressure on the 141-year-old bank as investors mull plugging a $2.4 billion capital shortfall.

Prime Minister David Cameron has questioned why Paul Flowers, a one-time local Labour politician and Methodist preacher with no banking qualifications, was judged suitable for the chairmanship during a period when the bank nearly collapsed.

Nov 21, 2013

Lobbying outcry at UK parliament prompts call for review

LONDON, Nov 21 (Reuters) – Britain must review whether
lawmakers with outside commerical interests who are also paid to
scrutinise government policy could damage the public’s
perception of parliament before a 2015 election, the official
watchdog said on Thursday.

Kathryn Hudson, the Parliamentary Commissioner for
Standards, called for an inquiry into the way parliamentary
committees are run after investigating complaints about a senior
lawmaker in Prime Minister David Cameron’s Conservative party.

Nov 21, 2013

Lobbying scandals at British parliament prompt call for review

LONDON (Reuters) – Britain must review whether lawmakers with outside commerical interests who are also paid to scrutinise government policy could damage the public’s perception of parliament before a 2015 election, the official watchdog said on Thursday.

Kathryn Hudson, the Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards, called for an inquiry into the way parliamentary committees are run after investigating complaints about a senior lawmaker in Prime Minister David Cameron’s Conservative party.

Nov 19, 2013

Co-op chairman quits over ex-bank boss drugs scandal

LONDON, Nov 19 (Reuters) – The chairman of Britain’s
Co-operative Group resigned on Tuesday as a drugs
scandal involving its former bank chairman raised questions over
governance standards and the ethical credentials of the mutually
owned group.

Group chairman Len Wardle quit with immediate effect for his
part in appointing Flowers, a 63-year-old Methodist preacher
with little banking experience, who oversaw the Co-op bank’s
near collapse and was recently caught on film allegedly
arranging to buy cocaine and crystal meth.

Nov 18, 2013

MPs want answers over Co-op Bank chairman’s appointment

LONDON, Nov 18 (Reuters) – British financial watchdogs
should be questioned over how they approved Paul Flowers to be
chairman of Co-operative Bank, senior legislators
said after a newspaper said it had obtained a film allegedly
showing him trying to buy drugs.

Conservative lawmaker Mark Garnier, an ex-investment banker,
told Reuters the committee was likely to ask Andrew Bailey, head
of the Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA), to give further
evidence on the issue.

Nov 11, 2013

Bank of England must lay out plans for ‘help to buy’ oversight – MP

LONDON (Reuters) – The Bank of England must explain exactly how it will police Britain’s flagship ‘help to buy’ housing stimulus programme, the head of an influential parliamentary committee said on Saturday, amid concerns the scheme could inflate a property bubble.

With a 2015 election in mind, the Conservative government is pushing the plan as a way to help people move onto, or up, the property ladder, with the knock-on effect of stimulating growth after three-years of economic stagnation.

Nov 9, 2013

Bank of England must lay out plans for ‘help to buy’ oversight -lawmaker

LONDON, Nov 9 (Reuters) – The Bank of England must explain
exactly how it will police Britain’s flagship ‘help to buy’
housing stimulus programme, the head of an influential
parliamentary committee said on Saturday, amid concerns the
scheme could inflate a property bubble.

With a 2015 election in mind, Britain’s Conservative
government is pushing the plan as a way to help people move
onto, or up, the property ladder, with the knock-on effect of
stimulating growth after three-years of economic stagnation.

Nov 4, 2013

UK employers warn against EU exit, call for reforms

LONDON (Reuters) – Britain must remain part of the European Union and reform it from within, business leaders told Prime Minister David Cameron on Monday, warning that a possible exit from the bloc could isolate the country’s economy.

As Britain gears up for a planned “in or out” referendum in 2017, British employers’ group the CBI said there was no viable alternative to remaining in the EU but laid out a wish-list of reforms to make membership more beneficial for the country.

Nov 4, 2013

Britain must stay in EU but reforms needed, business leaders say

LONDON (Reuters) – Britain must remain part of the European Union, British business leaders said on Monday, but they called on Prime Minister David Cameron to oppose the “creeping extension of EU authority”.

The comments from the Confederation of British Industry (CBI) appear to endorse Cameron’s position. The prime minister says he wants to stay in the bloc but has pledged to renegotiate Britain’s EU membership terms and put the changes to voters in an “in or out” referendum in 2017, if he is re-elected.

Nov 1, 2013

British water suppliers face scrutiny after government promises action on prices

LONDON, Nov 1 (Reuters) – British Prime Minister David
Cameron will take action to help households struggling to meet
rising water bills, his spokesman said on Friday in a signal
that Britain’s biggest water companies will face greater
political scrutiny over pricing.

His comments indicated that water supplies could join energy
companies at the centre of a political row over the rising cost
of living ahead of an election in 2015.