The European Commission’s Capital Markets Union Action Plan, introduced three years ago, is intended to make capital more readily available to businesses and encourage economic and job growth within the EU. Substantial strides have been made, yet there is much more to do, especially as subsequent events such as Brexit have altered the landscape. How far has the CMU Action Plan progressed to date, and how much farther has it still to go?
Relations are growing frostier globally, as political leaders become more nationalistic. And this change in climate is impacting economies, rendering them less cooperative. Two significant changes affecting the global business cycle include the US Fed’s tighter monetary policy, the impacts of which have rippled throughout the world, as well as the geographical shift of the centre of manufacturing production to the East, to the dismay of some Western leaders.
The stewardship responsibility of today’s bank has become more complicated in the light of climate change. Not only does a bank need to be cognizant of its responsibility to safeguard customer finances but also the future of the planet on which we all live. Green finance is an ever more significant influence on the decisions made by bankers determined to reconnect with the needs of society in more ways than just financial.
The decade following the financial crisis unleashed a torrent of regulatory requirements. Financial institutions have spent billions on technology and operations to achieve regulatory compliance; the frequency of new requirements is high. Despite all of this, regulators have not been satisfied with the quality of the data and level of transparency. How can banks and regulators strike a balance between the costs and the benefits of regulation?
In Europe, PSD2 is opening up previously inaccessible bank-customer data, with customer consent, to third-party providers, all in an effort to provide consumers with more financial options at the best prices. Although some bank managers are focused mostly on compliance, others are looking at the bigger picture: at Open Banking as a new opportunity to boost customer satisfaction and meaningful interaction.
The introduction of the European Commission’s banking directive PSD2 both recognises the shift towards Open Banking and helps drive the change; with banks expected to share private financial data with third-party providers at the request of clients, the payments industry is entering a period of radical change. What are the implications for the financial landscape, and how are banks adapting to the revolution?
Next year, investment firms in the European Union will be confronted by a new prudential regime, courtesy of the European Commission, that is so sweeping, it could cause some to rethink what client activities they engage in. Now is the time, for smaller firms, to take a close look at their operations under the light of the regulations and begin to prepare.
Let’s start with the basics, The Second Payment Services Directive (PSD2) was officially published by the European Commission in December 2015 and follows on from the First Payment Services Directive (PSD1), which was implemented in 2009.
Italy’s banking sector, mired in bad debt and low profitability, has been labelled Europe’s weakest, but fortunately it is making progress in addressing long-standing issues—with a little help from the government. Recent bank bailouts have given renewed hope to struggling lenders, while raising concerns that the arrangements conflict with Europe-wide rules prohibiting the use of taxpayer funds to bail out failing banks.