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UK banks 'unlikely to move abroad'

Banks located in the UK are unlikely to move away from the nation should recommendations from the Independent Commission on Banking (ICB) come into force, it has been suggested.

Sir John Vickers, chairman of the ICB, claimed there was a "low probability" lenders would relocate abroad if forced to carry out a raft of changes, including ring-fencing their high street operations from their investment arms and placing more money to one side to counter the threat of financial downturns in the future.

According to Sir John, no UK-based institutes have threatened to flee overseas, despite the ICB - which was created in 2010 - previously predicting that the implementation of its planned reforms would cost the banking sector in the region of £4 billion to £7 billion.

Sir John stated that customers will only see a very slight increase in costs as a result of the changes, noting: "I don't see a reason why they would pay a higher figure as a result of proposals of this kind."

By Asim Shah