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15 March 2012

This week in "Brussels"

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Articles from 08 March 2012 - 15 March 2012


ECON Committee published draft report with recommendations to the Commission on access to basic banking services
Rapporteur Jürgen Klute proposes that the future legislation should oblige payment service providers to act transparently in relation to a decision to deny or close a basic bank account.   View Article
ECRI: Credit reporting - Towards better access to credit and protection for consumers
This ECRI Commentary by Elina Pyykkö notes that credit reporting systems are networks combining different industries for the benefit of more efficiency and security, and excessive regulation can work against the very objective of stable and efficient financial markets  View Article
IMF: Statement at the conclusion of the European Bank Coordination “Vienna 2.0” Initiative’s Full Forum
Stability of the financial sector and ensuring orderly credit conditions in emerging Europe are in the shared interest of the private sector and home and host countries. Principles to avoid disorderly deleveraging in emerging Europe were agreed by officials and private sector banks.   View Article
VoxEU: Capital shortfall - A new approach to ranking and regulating systemic risks
This column discusses a method to estimate the capital that a financial firm would need to raise if another financial crisis occurs. This measure of capital shortfall is based on publicly available information but is conceptually similar to the stress tests conducted by US and European regulators.  View Article
VoxEU: Seven principles for better banking regulation
The global crisis has raised many questions. How did regulators and supervisors miss the warning signs so spectacularly, particularly those responsible for overseeing the dangerously exposed financial system? This column provides a diagnosis of the problem and outlines what can be done about it.  View Article
BIS: March 2012 Quarterly Review discusses global market repercussions of euro area sovereign debt crisis
The BIS Quarterly Review for March 2012 discusses the global impact of European bank deleveraging. The March issue also provides highlights from the latest BIS data on international banking and financial activity.   View Article
EBF: Ways to address worsening funding conditions in export credit markets
According to the European Banking Federation, the current financial and economic crisis is having serious, and worsening, repercussions in export finance. This paper identifies a range of policy tools which could alleviate the current difficulties, some of which are already in use in some markets.  View Article
EBF: European banks welcome common rules for central securities depositories
The European Banking Federation (EBF) welcomes the proposal published by the European Commission, aimed at establishing common rules for central securities depositories to operate in a safe and efficient manner.   View Article
BBA: Industry-wide improvements to Cash ISAs deliver a better service to consumers
The Office of Fair Trading (OFT) has recognised the significant progress made on improving Cash ISA transfers, in an announcement welcomed by the British Bankers' Association (BBA), the Building Societies Association (BSA) and the Tax Incentivised Savings Association (TISA).  View Article


Consultation on ESMA's draft technical advice on possible Delegated Acts concerning regulation on short selling and certain aspects of CDS
The purpose of this consultation is to seek comments on the technical advice that ESMA proposes to give to the European Commission on a number of possible delegated acts concerning the Regulation, as listed in the Commission request for advice.  View Article
FESE response to ESMA’s consultation on short selling and certain aspects of CDS
FESE supports efficient, fair, orderly and transparent financial markets that meet the needs of well-protected and informed investors, and which provide a source for companies to raise capital. FESE Members are glad to have the opportunity to contribute to ESMA's consultation.  View Article
EBF Response to ESMA consultation on possible Delegated Acts (regulation on short selling and certain aspects of CDS)
The European Banking Federation provided a response on ESMA's advice for delegated legislation in the area of short selling and certain aspects of credit default swaps (CDS).  View Article
ISLA EU Short Selling Regulations: Joint Association Response to ESMA second consultation
AFME, ICMA, ISLA and ISDA contributed in a joint input to the ESMA Consultation Paper on possible Delegated Acts concerning the regulation on short selling and certain aspects of credit default swaps.   View Article
IMA expresses concerns about ESMA advice on short selling
The Investment Management Association's Director of Wholesale, Guy Sears, evaluated the risks connected to the ESMA advice.  View Article
IOSCO consults on exchange traded funds regulation
The Technical Committee of the International Organisation of Securities Commissions has published a consultation report, 'Principles for the Regulation of Exchange Traded Funds', which examines the key regulatory issues regarding ETFs.  View Article
IPE: European pension funds warned over impact of Dodd-Frank rules
Consultants have advised European pension schemes to suspend their derivatives trades with US companies until the Dodd-Frank rules are amended.  View Article
Nicolas Véron: A new era for global financial standards
Véron looks at the gradual shift in the role of global financial standard-setters, which are becoming more assertive in looking at how their standards are adopted and implemented around the world.  View Article
Benoît Coeuré: The reform of financial regulation – priorities from an European Central Bank perspective
In his speech, Mr Benoît Coeuré, Member of the Executive Board of the ECB, discussed the implementation of the new Basel III framework, the "too big to fail" problem, and key policy issues in the field of OTC derivatives, financial markets infrastructures and the review of the MiFID.  View Article
New EDHEC-Risk research sees no evidence of causal link between credit default swap and sovereign debt prices
This working paper tests the claim that speculative use of CDS by market participants had caused or accelerated the rapid decline in 2010-11 of bond prices in eurozone periphery countries, a claim that led to the decision to make the ban on so-called "naked" CDS permanent.  View Article
FT: LSE set to take control of LCH.Clearnet
The London Stock Exchange on Friday unveiled a deal worth up to €463 million to take a majority stake in LCH.Clearnet, in a move that could catapult it into the front ranks of global exchanges and that caps a three-year turnaround of the British bourse by its French chief executive, Xavier Rolet.  View Article
Daily Telegraph: Thomson Reuters probe at 'critical' stage
The European Commission has warned Thomson Reuters that its investigation into whether the company has engaged in anti-competitive behaviour in the supply of data to financial markets has reached a "critical stage".   View Article


FTAdviser: Bank of England warns EU Directive could 'drown' regulators
Europe's looming Solvency II Directive could swamp national regulators in red tape and a flood of data that will prove punitive in terms of cost to monitor, and could risk them 'drowning' in an overly risk-sensitive regime, Bank of England deputy governor Paul Tucker has warned.  View Article Insurers enhance risk engines to meet Solvency II demands
The requirements of new regulations such as Solvency II are forcing insurers to update their risk technology infrastructure. This article looks at how insurers are adjusting their risk engines in response to these demands and the challenges they face.  View Article

Asset Management

FT: Few hedge funds gain in Greek bond saga
In the long term, few in the hedge fund community have any doubt that Greece's travails are far from over. Greece has undertaken its first debt restructuring, but there may well be more.  View Article
WSJ: Smaller hedge funds reach the end of the road
The hedge fund industry faces a wave of consolidation this year, with some management firms seeking a buyer and many more shutting down, after failing to recover losses incurred during the financial crisis.  View Article
Letter to the [UK] Chancellor on pensions tax relief
Chris Cummings, Chief Executive of TheCityUK, co-signed a letter to the Chancellor on pensions tax relief ahead of the UK Budget Statement.  View Article
IPE: NAPF suggests UK pensions regulator should be allowed to merge DC schemes
The chairman of the National Association of Pension Funds (NAPF) has suggested that the UK Pensions Regulator should be granted powers to force the merger of inefficient defined contribution (DC) schemes with larger 'super trusts'.  View Article
NAPF: Exchange traded funds 'made simple' for pension funds
A new guide is being published today by NAPF to help pension funds get to grips with the increasingly popular exchange traded funds (ETFs).  View Article

Corporate Governance/Accounting

FEE commented to COSO on internal control
FEE published its comment letter on the Committee of Sponsoring Organisations of the Treadway Commission (COSO) Public Exposure on Internal Control - Integrated Framework.  View Article
FRC: Revised operating procedures by the Financial Reporting Review Panel
The Financial Reporting Review Panel published revised operating procedures which incorporate changes on sharing information with the Audit Inspection Unit and on the circumstances in which the Panel may make an announcement about a company's report and accounts under review.  View Article
FEE commented on EC Communication renewed EU strategy 2011-14 for Corporate Social Responsibility
FEE welcomes the EC Communication on Corporate Social Responsibility. FEE has contributed to key elements, namely on the EC Consultation on Country-by Country Reporting, the revision of the Transparency Directive and the Accounting Directives.   View Article
IASB and EFRAG discussed status of ongoing projects and other topics
The IASB and the EFRAG delegation met on 9 March 2012 to discuss the IASB's ongoing work on the four major open projects, and to address a number of other matters.  View Article
ICGN's comment letter to FASB/IASB on revenue recognition
ICGN commented on FASB/IASB Exposure Draft, 'Proposed Accounting Standards Update (Revision of Exposure Draft Issued June 24, 2010), Revenue Recognition (Topic 605), Revenue from Contracts with Customers'.   View Article

Financial Services Policy

EU Member States to discuss the Tobin tax with Minister Vestager chairing the ECOFIN meeting
The Danish Presidency is taking forward the discussion of the proposal to introduce a Financial Transactions Tax. In light of the request from a number of countries, the Danish Presidency has accelerated the work.  View Article
Financial transaction tax: First technical reading completed
The Presidency noted that a whole range of sensitive issues remains to be addressed, such as the impact of the FTT on the economy, the risks of relocation outside the EU, and the enforcement of the Directive vis-à-vis non-EU financial institutions.  View Article
Persaud/Griffith-Jones: Why critics are wrong about a financial transactions tax
Far from sending taxpayers rushing for the exit, this tax gets more foreigners to pay it than any other, write the authors in this European Voice article.  View Article
Sharon Bowles: “We must protect European financial watchdog funding”
In a vote in Strasbourg on the 2013 EU budget, Ms Bowles tabled the amendment on behalf of the European Parliament's liberal group, calling for the ESAs to have their own legal services in order to ensure independence, which is an essential component of their establishment.  View Article
Euroclear Central Bank conference on financial stability
FSA's Andrew Bailey stressed that the most difficult issue faced in bank regulation is seeking to strike an appropriate balance between building the prudential buffers of the banking system and in doing so, not fuelling disorderly and damaging deleveraging in the banking system.  View Article
FSA published an analysis of the main risks facing consumers in the financial services sector
The Retail Conduct Risk Outlook shows that consumers continue to struggle with the effects of a slower economy, low interest rates and poor returns on investments. The FSA found evidence that many people are trying to tackle this by saving more, shopping around and paying off their debt.  View Article
House of Commons European Scrutiny Committee report on the Professional Qualifications Directive (PQD)
The Committee is awaiting further information on the Government's position on the legal base and on the powers conferred on the Commission to adopt certain implementing acts without consultation.  View Article
FTAdviser: FSA reveals concern over ‘stretched’ networks pre-RDR
In a 124-page analysis of risks facing the financial services sector published today, the regulator reveals its concerns about how businesses are adapting to meet the Retail Distribution Review rules, and specifically highlights risks relating to compliance at "stretched" networks.  View Article

European Council/Parliament

ECOFIN: Hungary is given incentive to pursue more responsible fiscal policy
Ministers adopted a new recommendation for Hungary to correct their excessive government deficit, and decided on a partial suspension of commitments from the Cohesion Fund for Hungary.   View Article


Bruegel: The G20 - Characters in search of an author
This paper by Ignazio Angeloni and Jean Pisani-Ferry revisits the basic economic and geopolitical motivations for the G20, in order to review its performance and attempt to draw lessons for the path ahead.  View Article

Graham Bishop’s Articles

Graham Bishop: Financial World article - February 2012
In his second article for Financial World, Graham comments on recent and upcoming developments, relating i.a. to Greece, cross-border bank resolution within the EU, bank deleveraging, and the Danish Presidency.  View Article

© Graham Bishop

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