Regulators 'need more power over banks'

4 November 2011

Regulators should be granted significantly more powers when overseeing the activities of banks following the global economic downturn.

That is according to Mervyn King, governor of the Bank of England (BoE), who has called for the government to respond to the issues that contributed to the recession in the banking industry by creating fresh rules.

Mr King indicated that such bodies should be given the freedom to force financiers to make alterations to their business even if they are in compliance with the guidelines, as current legislation makes it far too easy for them to bend the rules.

The official - whose organisation is scheduled to announce its latest interest rates decision next week (10 November) - told MPs in a committee that they should strive to end the culture whereby the system is going round in circles.

He insisted that regulators should be able to tell banks "we don't understand why your organisation needs to be so complex ... you haven't broken a rule, but too bad, you've got to change it".

By Claire Archer

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