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Barnier ready to outline tough bank regulations

City A.M. Reporter
THE European Commission is today expected to announce its intention to extend pay curbs in the financial sector and tighten control of credit rating agencies.

Against a backdrop of growing frustration with sluggish progress in regulating a financial industry blamed for the crisis, the European Commission’s top officials will outline plans to reinvigorate momentum for reform.

Michel Barnier, the European commissioner in charge of an overhaul of banking regulation, will level harsh criticism at shareholders and managers for not acting to avert crisis.

At a news conference with European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso, he is expected to announce the EU executive’s plans for further laws controlling pay in the insurance sector alongside banks. “We have put out the fire with Greece,” one European Commission official said. “In the run up to the G20 meeting, Barroso wants to make clear that Europe is taking the action needed in regulating the financial markets.”

Barnier will also put credit rating agencies under the watch of a new pan-European supervisor and give it the power to demand information or impose penalties.

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