Securities and banking: bridges and walls
The paper examines the relationship between banking and securities activities in the light of financial market developments (securitisation, institutionalization of investment, emergence of complex financial instruments, conglomeration and consolidation), with particular reference to Europe. The enhanced links between banking and securitiesbusinesses have generated increased and new risks to financial institutions. However, banks' stability remains crucial for the stability of the financial system as a whole, because of their unique role as provider of liquidity. The paper also addresses the implications of the banking-securities combination for regulatory and supervisory arrangements. The exporting of prudential requirements traditional in banking (such as capital ratios) into the securities field, and the importing of securities regulation (such as transparency requirements) into the banking sector, can be deemed mutually beneficial. As regards supervision, there is a need to monitor the continued effectiveness of the current framework. This entails strengthening co-operation both at the national level and on a cross-border basis among sectoral supervisors in the micro-prudential field, and between them and central banks in the macro-prudential field.
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