HSBC is to lead the retail banking sector into sharing personal customer data with competitors to help stop consumers getting into debt.
The Times reports the move is likely to be followed by other clearing banks, in response to criticism from lawmakers in Parliament as to the ease with which consumers can borrow excessively.
Data will be shared through the UK’s three main credit reference agencies Equifax, Experian and Creditcall, and will enable banks to better gauge whether money lent will be repaid, HSBC says.
THE FSA HAS rejected claims in a tribunal that its enforcement action against Shell for overstating reserves in any way directly implicated former chairman Philip Watts, reports The Daily Telegraph
Watts' legal team has argued his name was sullied by the report into the event published by the FSA, in which he is not mentioned by name – hence was not given the chance to comment on before publication.
The FSA says since any implication Watts was to blame for the fiasco was only the result of press speculation, it cannot be held responsible, and that holding up publication of the report into such a damaging event would itself have been “irresponsible”.
The Guardian notes any tribunal finding in favour of Watts could force the FSA to consult more widely in future investigations and issue more information to those implicated along the way.
PENSIONS SAVERS WILL pour £8.5bn into UK housing and a further £1.5bn into housing abroad, thanks to new pension legislation coming into effect from next April, according to a report highlighted by today’s Times.
Ability to gear and have the government effectively pay part of the price of a residential property are set to encourage an additional 50,000 people who already have Sipps to move into the sector, according to IFA Hargreaves Lansdown, which produced the report.
At the expected average UK sipp property price of £195,000, this would mean housing worth up to 5% of the value of the UK property market could be up for grabs.
Tom McPhail, head of pensions research for Hargreaves Lansdown, which produce the report, says: “It’s the golden combination of property investment and government tax breaks; people want it and they want it now.”
The Scotsman reports banknote issuers in Scotland and Northern Ireland could be asked by the Bank of England to deposit an extra £80m as cover against notes in circulation.
Those banks affected are Royal Bank of Scotland, Bank of Scotland and Clydesdale Bank in Scotland, as well as Bank of Ireland, First Trust Bank, National Bank, Northern Bank and Ulster Bank in Northern Ireland.
The Treasury has issued a consultation on the suitable level of cover, or money held by the Bank of England, against notes in circulation issued by these banks, ahead of a Bill which is expected to call for changes to the rules affecting notes in circulation around the UK.
The Treasury says these new rules “would provide greater confidence and protection to note holders and ensure a level playing field for all banks”, The Scotsman writes.
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