Officials in the French banking industry are starting to make provisions for a potential raft of reforms following the country's upcoming presidential poll, analysts have said.
The French population is scheduled to vote in the second round of polling for this position on 6 May and, according to the Financial Times, the nation's financial sector could be set for wholesale changes depending on the outcome.
Socialist candidate Francois Hollande - who is favorite to defeat incumbent Nicolas Sarkozy in the election - has pledged to impose regulation whereby banks have to separate their retail business from investment banking activities.
This would represent a significant move away from France's current universal bank model and could see the revenue of lenders fall markedly.
And professionals at Credit Suisse have indicated in a note that the ongoing "uncertainty" over the election will "weigh on the performance of French banks" in the coming months.
By Claire Archer