Adair: FSA Will Be Tougher But Not As Tough As Some?


The Turner Report hints that the UK FSA may get tough but not really that tough, or at least, they are going to leave the being really tough bit to other jurisdictions…


The Turner report makes for interesting reading and it certainly marks some sort of watershed in the UK regulatory system. However, the issue that London as a financial centre will remain strong simply because it is not going to be quite sotough as other juirisdictions with its new regulation is an intriguing dichotomy and opens up the first fissure in the reactionary global regulatory concensus that has been allegedly building in recent weeks.

Meanwhile, the situation is further “cloudified” (as opposed to being clarified) by the UK Finance Minister who apparently never believed in “light touch” regulation anyway. However, Alastair Darling continues to agree with the concept of “Principals-based” regulation which would suggest that he is more in the business of talking tough while resisting the instincts of the British Labour Party to make a switch to a much more left of centre, highly regulated approach.

It is intriguing that such clearly equivocal statements are being made so as to attempt to protect London’s status as the world’s most cosmopolitan financial centre. However. at the same time, these recent UK statements leave open the issue of just how co-ordinated the rush to much greater global regulation actually is?

It would seem wise to suggest that once the current political thrashing of offshore financial services centres has finally abated then it will be the onshore financial centres who begin a more nuanced approach to offering finely granulated regulatory arbitrage…


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