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Home » Retail Banking 2020 Insights » Morning Briefing: Call for restructuring of UK and US banks

Morning Briefing: Call for restructuring of UK and US banks

Morning News

UK and US banks need to focus less on shareholder dividends and executive pay in the interests of their employees, creditors and wider society, according to the Bank of England's chief economist Andy Haldane.

In a speech to the University of Edinburgh's Corporate Finance Conference, Mr Haldane said that banks need to be restructured so that they take a long-term view in order to avoid under-investing in the future and being more prone to collapse.

Varoufakis faces criminal prosecution over 'Plan B' currency plot

The Greek parliament has received two sets of legal complaints through the Supreme Court over the country's former finance minister Yanis Varoufakis' plans to set up a parallel payments system inside the monetary union.

The complaints — from a Greek lawyer and mayor, and, separately, from a group of opposition conservative parliamentarians — could see Varoufakis face criminal charges if the parliament overturns his right as an MP to immunity from criminal prosecution.

US: Fintech investment doubles as NY trumps California

New York is leading California in terms of fintech start-ups having more requests for funding, according to a report by investor relations platform Gust.

In the second quarter, the number of fintech funding applications in New York doubled compared to the same period in 2014, beating California in terms of total applications by almost four percent, up from 0.1 percent in the first quarter.

Santander UK's finance boss quits due to float delays

Santander UK's chief finance officer is leaving the bank due to frustration at the apparent postponing of its proposed stock market flotation.

Stephen Jones said he had joined the bank to work on the IPO but would prefer to spend time with his family as the flotation shows no sign of happening.

Challenger banks forcing cuts in mortgage prices — Virgin Money boss

The UK's major banks are cutting mortgage prices due to competition from challenger banks, according to Jayne-Anne Gadhia, chief executive of Virgin Money.

She said that the big banks were cutting prices in an effort to protect their market share. "They were slower at the beginning of the year to compete in the mortgage market, but in the last couple of months they have tried to regain market share," she said. "It does what everyone wanted: it means competition is more acute and alive, and good for the customer."

Virgin Money announced that its profits climbed sharply in the first six months following its flotation in November. It is responsible for one-fifth of the increase in outstanding mortgage loans in the UK so far in 2015.

Barclays reports 25 percent rise in profits

Barclays has reported a 25 percent rise in statutory pre-tax profits to £3.14bn for the first half of 2015. The bank revealed it had set aside a further £850 million for customer compensation — at least some of which is to settle further claims for mis-sold payment protection insurance.

RBS to sell $2bn stake in US bank Citizens

Royal Bank of Scotland has announced plans to sell a $2bn [£1.3bn] stake in its US subsidiary Citizens Financial Group as it continues its efforts to relinquish non-core assets and focus on UK retail and business banking.

Contactless cards replace cash

British consumers used credit and debit cards in 1.1 billion transactions in May as the adoption of contactless payments helped drive the country's ongoing move away from cash.

Card use has risen by 10 percent in just one year as credit and debit cards are increasingly used for lower-value purchases, according to the UK Cards Association. From April to May, the number of card transactions increased by 12 million. The move to lower-value card payments — the average fell by more than £1 on the year, from £47.97 to £46.92 — has been attributed by the UK Cards Association to increased usage of contactless payments.

PTSB faces €55m costs over 'serious failure' leading to repossessions

State-controlled Irish lender Permanent TSB is facing fines of up to €20 million from the country's central bank as well as compensation payments to customers of more than €35 million following a "serious failure" in the manner in which it managed interest rates on 1,372 mortgage accounts.

The failures include mortgage overpayments, mortgage arrears, legal proceedings and a loss of properties in 61 cases — at least 22 of which, PTSB admitted, would not otherwise have happened.

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