FCA calls on banks for industry-wide Brexit plan

Griffith Jones John FCAChairman of the FCA John Griffith-Jones has called on banks to deliver an industry-wide response to the UK’s decision to Brexit, in the first public comments from the FCA since the vote.

Speaking at an industry conference, Griffith-Jones urged banks not to wait for certainty on the outcomes of Brexit before making plans.

He urged banks over the summer to identify “at least the broad brush strokes, if not all the technical details, of alternative plans”.

“The position is uncertain and it will not be settled for some time. But it is important for firms to resist the temptation to cite chicken and egg ‘we cannot design a strategy without knowing the rules’,” he said.

“It is important for the UK that, at the appropriate moment, you are able to inform the government where your major opportunities and risks lie, along with other industries, as it forms its plans for the negotiation of our exit.”

Bank bosses have already met with the Bank of England, to discuss the financial impact of Brexit. The chief executives of the five biggest UK lenders, including HSBC and Barclays, met to discuss the market reaction to the referendum result, how the financial system had functioned amid the volatility in asset prices and the impact the Brexit vote was expected to have on the economy.

Griffith-Jones also reiterated the FCA’s view that the result of the EU referendum will not change any of the FCA’s work in the interim.

“This is important; we will not be thanked for taking our eye off the ball, particularly with our responsibilities for day to day regulation of the markets and their orderly operation,” he says.

The FCA has already begun thinking about how it might need to review the pipeline of EU rules, which Griffith-Jones says is “a task not to be underestimated”.