This obsession with the financial crisis must end
Monday 16 January 2012 - by Deborah Poole
If a single word could sum up the state of the financial services industry in 2011, it would be "uncertainty". Very few years in recent memory have raised so many questions about the regulatory, political and economic outlook.
The threat of a Europe-wide, financial transaction tax and new EU rules, designed it would appear to ensure that clearing activities be shifted from London to Paris or Frankfurt, are leading many European based trading groups to consider whether the City of London (or indeed Europe) is an appropriate place to do business.
The proposals contained in the Vickers Report, which contemplate the separation of UK banks' retail banking from their wholesale and capital markets business, are likely to focus the attention of bank bosses on restructuring rather than on defending a world class financial and trading model or on building additional business lines to address the shift of economic activity from established to emerging markets.
Not to mention the cost of implementing these proposals, which could see market participants withdrawing from business sectors altogether and hinder investor returns, healthy competition and confidence.
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Will markets in 2012 have a tougher time than 2011?