21st April 2017

BBA Brief – 21 April 2017

Government scraps probate plans

Government plans to replace the existing probate scheme with a  ‘sliding scale’ based on estate value have been scrapped due to time constraints before the general election, said the Ministry of Justice (BBC News, online). The ‘death-tax’, so-called by critics, would have increased probate fees to as much as £20,000, prompting MPs to question the legality and social consequences of the proposal (Daily Mail, p1, online).

Election manifestos outline key policies

Theresa May has pledged to reduce net migration in the Conservative party’s manifesto in an attempt to appeal to Northern Labour voters, The Daily Telegraph (p1) reports.Meanwhile, the Guardian writes that ‘the most important election for Britain is the presidential contest in France’, the first round of which takes place on Sunday. The result may ‘put Brexit in the shade’ or impact our own election result (The Guardian, p30, online).

Brexit negotiation guidelines revealed

Leaked European Commission negotiating guidelines reveal Brussels’ requirement that the UK remain subject to European Court of Justice laws post-Brexit (The Times, p1, £, online). Any exit deal that does not uphold EU citizen rights will be vetoed as part of this ‘hard line approach’, warned European parliament chief Antonio Tajani (Financial Times, £, online). The guidelines also say the UK must pay all Brexit costs and ‘bear the currency risk’ (Politico, online). Tajani added, however, that Britain would be welcomed back if a new UK government reversed Brexit after the general election (The Guardian, p1, online).

Latest from the BBA

Robert Driver, BBA Policy Director of Capital Markets, blogs on transaction reporting in the new MiFIR reporting framework, especially the short selling requirement.

Matthew Herbert, BBA Director of Strategy and Digital, blogs on what makes good Fintech, and how industry and regulators can measure it.

Sophie Westmoreland, BearingPoint Marketing Manager, blogs on the potential for adopting an industry-wide reporting utility in the UK.

Wednesday 26th April – Webinar: Customers in Vulnerable situations
In this webinar the BBA and The Money Advice Trust draw on new evidence and practical guidance to help regulated firms tackle the most difficult issues staff are encountering on vulnerability, and review how firms are meeting their regulatory and legal requirements on vulnerability. To register click here.

Thursday 27th April  Webinar: The Fourth Money Laundering Directive: Are you ready?
AML systems and controls remain high on the FCA’s agenda, with three months to go until the implementation of 4MLD. In this webinar, BBA associate members Kompli-Global will highlight key changes and how Regtech can help banks meet their obligations. To register click here.

Latest from our sponsor Jaywing

Ben O’Brien, Jaywing Managing Director, blogs on the benefits of developing integrated modelling programmes for IFRS 9 and stress testing.

Stat of the day

0.89: the mortgage rate percentage launched today, as lenders aim to attract buyers amid political and economic uncertainty (The Times, £, p1).

News in brief

In a speech at the International Finance’s Washington Policy Summit, Governor of the Bank of England Mark Carney said the global financial system requires dynamic regulation to ensure financial stability and meet new challenges (Reuters, online).

Banks have welcomed Mastercard’s suggestion to introduce biometric card payments in the UK. Fingerprint sensors could soon replace chip and PIN as a means to both combat fraud and add convenience (The Times, £, p19).

Online card spending in the UK reached £154 billion last year, amounting to £422 million a day. This figure has risen by more than a quarter over the last two years (Sky News, online).

Small shops may be forced to remove their cash machines or begin charging for usage following a legal ruling that in-store ATMs must have a separate business rates bill which could cost retailers £39.3m a year (The Sun, online).

World Bank President Jim Yong Kim has warned against strategies of protectionism. He said automation, not global trade, causes job displacement (Politico, online).

The Association for Financial Markets in Europe has reported a loss of €36.7bn in total issuance, down 36% from the same time last year. (Financial Times, £, online).

Reuters (online) writes that Steven Maijoor, chairman of the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) has urged financial services firms not to undercut one another as they vie to attract UK business post-Brexit.


World Bank Spring Meeting.

International Monetary Fund Spring Meeting.

ONS Retail Sales in Great Britain statistics for March 2017 released.

What the commentators say

Writing in CityAM, Virgin Money Chief Executive Jayne-Anne Gadhia claims that the drive for gender equality in UK financial services boardrooms is being hampered by corporate culture in many firms. She urges financial services companies that have not yet signed up to the Women in Finance Charter (122 companies, employing over 500,000 people, are signatories so far) to do so.

The Financial Times’ Philip Stephens believes the Prime Minister “will never be trusted by the anti-European ultras on the Conservative right for whom a hard Brexit is the soft option”, and that increasing her majority in the snap general election would give her the space she needs to disregard their views on the negotiations with the EU.

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