Parliamentary Commission on Banking Standards report - Ed Balls response

21 December 2012

ed ballsEd Balls MP, Labour's Shadow Chancellor, responding to the Parliamentary Commission on Banking Standards' first report, said:

"This is an important cross-party report which sets out real challenges for the banks, government and Parliament. After repeated scandals, from Libor fixing to mis-selling to small businesses, it is clear that we need radical reform of our banks.

"Having looked closely at the government’s draft legislation to implement the Vickers proposals for a ringfence between retail and investment banking, the Commission believes it ‘falls well short of what is required’ and is unpersuaded by the Government’s relaxation of the Vickers recommendations.

"As Ed Miliband and I said at the Labour Conference this year, if the letter and spirit of the Vickers proposals are not delivered and we do not see cultural change in our banks, full separation will be necessary. The Commission is clearly right to say the jury is still out and to demand a reserve power for full separation of the banks.

"We need serious cultural change in our banks and the Commission's next report on the culture and practices of the banks will be just as important as these vital structural changes. Only then will we get the banking system our businesses and economy needs."