Industry response

BSA responds to Government's consultations on banking reform and the future of building societies

The Government White Paper 'Banking Reform: delivering stability and supporting a sustainable economy', published on 14 June 2012,set out the Government’s detailed proposals for implementing the recommendations of the Independent Commission on Banking (ICB), to fundamentally reform the structure of banking in the UK. The Future of Building Societies discussion paper set out the Government's vision for building societies, and how the recommendations of the ICB will apply to the sector.

In responding to the White Paper and discussion paper, the BSA welcomes the recognition that the UK has a thriving, innovative and efficient building society sector that plays an important role in the economy, providing consumers with a mutually-owned option for their deposits and mortgage lending.

The Future of Building Societies discussion paper also provides an opportunity to modernise the Building Societies Act, whilst maintaining the distinctive features of mutually-owned institutions.

The BSA believes that building societies should continue to be able to offer services such as estate agency and retail investment advice. These help to make up a full range of saving and housing services, and are far removed from the wholesale and casino banking the ring-fence was intended to exclude.

The BSA believes the high level principles proposed by the Treasury – to enable the sector to be able to compete fairly in the future, while protecting the sector’s distinctive approach – should provide a useful basis for reform.

The BSA responses to the White Paper on Banking Reform and The Future of Building Societies can be viewed at the link below -

The Future of Building Societies - BSA response

Banking Reform: delivering stability and supporting a sustainable economy - BSA response