Clash looms in Parliament over banking bill

 
Tim Wallace
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AN INFLUENTIAL group of Lords is threatening to derail chancellor George Osborne’s key banking reforms with a series of challenges in parliament today.

Tory ex-chancellor Lord Lawson, the Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby, former cabinet secretary Lord Turnbull and ex-Treasury Select Committee chair Lord McFall want to crack down on bonuses and impose tougher reforms on banks that bend the rules. The group wants to include a threat to break up all retail and investment banks if any single bank tries to get around the incoming ring-fence, designed to stand between the two parts of lenders. It also wants a major review of proprietary trading at banks, in which regulators will evaluate the risks taken by trading banks.

Amendments lodged ahead of a debate on the Banking Bill in the House of Lords this afternoon also seek to force bankers to defer bonuses by up to 10 years, and to cancel the deferred bonuses of bankers at institutions that end up being bailed out in the future. The group, who sat together on the Banking Standards Commission, also want regulators to meet banks’ auditors more frequently.

Labour also added to calls from other peers today to review senior bankers’ licences each year, to make sure executives are more closely monitored by authorities.

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