The first man in the running to become the next chairman of the Financial Conduct Authority has claimed his lack of financial experience is an asset for the role.
George Kerevan, a former MP for the SNP, has applied to the Treasury with a pledge to “claim only normal working expenses” and eschew current chairman John Griffith-Jones’ £193,000 pay packet.
“[T]he widespread lack of confidence felt in the FCA is rooted precisely in the appointment of key board representatives from within the ‘magic circle’ of the City and Oxbridge. My candidature is based on breaking with this practice,” wrote Kerevan, who lost his seat in June.
He added that he would try to release the FCA’s report on RBS’s controversial Global Restructuring Group that pushed small firms into insolvency, which the watchdog’s chief executive Andrew Bailey has refused to make public.
“Rightly or wrongly, significant sections of the small business community doubt the FCA’s ability to provide them with redress against historic and ongoing mis-selling or inappropriate behaviour by large banks,” he wrote.
Kerevan was elected as MP for East Lothian in 2015 but fell victim to a collapse in support for the Scottish National Party in this summer's snap election.
The Glasgow-born politician has previously worked as an economics lecturer and a journalist for The Scotsman newspaper. His only banking experience is a stint on the parliamentary Treasury select committee.
Griffith-Jones will stand down in March when his five-year term ends. No other candidates for the job have declared themselves.
Read more: PROFILE: JOHN GRIFFITH-JONES