Standing together for a UK financial sector ready to tackle our most urgent challenges, not repeat the mistakes of the past.
The UK is undertaking the biggest reforms to financial regulation in a generation.
The Financial Services and Markets Bill will fundamentally rewrite the rules that shape this critical sector. The government has called this “a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity” - our coalition believes it is crucial the UK seizes this opportunity to address the biggest challenges we face as a country today.
— Our demands
Climate change and nature: by giving regulators a new statutory objective to align the financial system with the 1.5 degree goals in the Paris Agreement so that they can focus on what matters most for our future.
UK banks, asset managers, and other financial institutions are responsible for nearly double the UK’s annual carbon emissions, and have direct links to rainforest deforestation.
Fair access for all: By giving regulators a responsibility, for the first time, to promote financial inclusion to help the millions of people who are excluded from essential financial services.
17% of the UK population – over 8 million adults – would struggle to cope in a cashless society, and over 1 million people don’t have a bank account.
Stability of the economy: By maintaining the independence of regulators to act in the public interest, and abandon the dangerous proposal to force them to cheerlead for industry through an ‘international competitiveness’ objective.
According to the Institute for Fiscal Studies, the global financial crisis 2007/08 cost British workers on average £800 per year in lost earnings.
Accountability and transparency: By introducing requirements that give the public and civil society as big a say in how the financial sector works as industry lobbyists.
1 in 3 Treasury Minister meetings are with representatives from the finance sector and its lobbyists.
A fair financial future for all
We welcome the government’s commitment to build a financial sector that is Net Zero aligned and acts in the interests of communities and citizens, creating jobs, supporting businesses, and driving sustainable economic growth across the country.
However, we are concerned that current proposals miss a golden opportunity to strengthen the UK’s global leadership position by failing to focus regulation on what matters to our country and the planet.
Our joint statement first published by 37 public interest groups in February 2022 explains more, including our six recommendations in depth. More information can be found on our resources page.