UK responds to EU financial law proposals

The House of Lords' European Union committee reacts to EU financial crisis legislation crisis and prepares to discuss the future of EU supervision

LONDON - The UK House of Lords' European Union committee has released an initial report on the European Commission's regulatory and legislative proposals in response to the global financial crisis. The paper, 'EU legislative initiatives in response to the financial turmoil', includes the UK government's and Financial Services Authority's (FSA) views on the EU proposals.

An in-depth inquiry will look into the role of EU financial regulation, the effectiveness of the proposals and further EU-level responses. It will look into the possibility of EU supervisory reform, which could take the form of a European system of financial supervisors or a central European authority to supervise pan-European financial groups. The effectiveness of home-host group supervision across the EU market will also be assessed.

Future legislation will also be looked at. Controversy has arisen over depositor protection schemes and the possibility of EU-level rules regarding the central bank as 'lender of last resort', as European countries' have taken diverse approaches to this issue in the past three months. The opportunity for a revised EU directive, including intervention triggers tied to a liquidity or leverage ratio, will also be investigated, in addition to a review of current state aid rules for banking and legislating procedures for bank insolvency.

The wider requirements for a global supervisory system in response to the turmoil will also be discussed - most notably through existing channels offered by the G-7 Financial Stability Forum, G-20 group of ministers, and the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

The report may be read by clicking here.

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