The Financial Services (Banking Reform) Bill (the Bill) was introduced to Parliament on 4 February 2013.  On the same day, the Government published its response to the report which the Parliamentary Commission on Banking Standards (PCBS) published at the end of last year and which formed part of the pre-legislative scrutiny of the Bill.   

The Government’s response sets out some of the changes it has made to the draft Bill as a result of the recommendations of the PCBS as well as changes which will be introduced during the passage of the Bill in Parliament.

The Bill, which the Government expects will be passed by this time next year, contains only the framework.  Much of the detail will be set out in secondary legislation, some of which is expected to be published before the House of Commons committee stage – this could potentially be in early March if the Bill follows a similar timetable to the passage of the Financial Services Act 2012 (FS Act) through Parliament.  The Bill represents the second pillar of the Government’s financial services reform programme and implements the recommendations of the Independent Commission on Banking (ICB) through amendments to the Financial Services and Markets Act 2012 (FSMA).   The FS Act, which is the first pillar and amends FSMA to accommodate the new financial services regulatory architecture, was passed into law at the end of last year.

Please click here for our briefing summarising the key changes, the most significant being the Government’s intention to introduce the power for the PRA to enforce full separation between retail and wholesale banking for individual entities.