DISCUSSION BoE’s Jenkins: ‘Stand up and speak out or the battle over safeguards will be lost’

by Yolanda Villafuerte _______11th October 2012

Robert Jenkins, member of the Bank of England’s Financial Policy Committee has told an audience of senior fund managers to ‘speak up’ and become more involved in reshaping the banking sector.

He said ‘What stakeholder group other than the investment management industry has the combination of financial expertise, credibility and clout sufficient to counterbalance the banks and so better shape the outcome of the debate?’.

‘The old financial structure has crumbled and a new edifice is rising. But its foundation is flawed, the walls are thin and the beams are brittle. You did not design it. You are not building it. But you and your clients will have to live in it. So please check the plans and the motivations of those influential in its fabrication’.

He criticised lobbyists for advancing false choices and myths to regulators and government in the past, which result in sub-optimal reforms and unnecessary complications. Mr Jenkins added that banks were beginning to accept that these myths were wrong, although they are partially held by the legacy of ‘the old guard’. These myths include the trade-off between better capitalised banks and economic growth, better leveraged banks and profits, and the myth that making banks safer will cause a competitive disadvantage.

He urged fund managers to contribute to the banking reforms and that although ‘the delivery date is seven years off’; there is still time to strengthen the system.

To read more please visit ‘Investors must break their ‘silence’ on reform’ written by Harry Wilson, Banking Correspondent at The Telegraph.

Tomorrow’s Company in partnership with UNEP-FI, has been working with a number of key players in the financial system (Aviva Investors, Hermes Fund Managers, and UBS, together with BLP and Korn/Ferry Whitehead Mann) to set out an agenda for the way ahead. Please visit the project page to read the Tomorrow’s Capital Market’s proposal.

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