Britain to boost powers of financial regulators

MANCHESTER, September 22, 2008 (AFP) – Britain is to draw up legislation to bolster the role of financial regulators and make it easier to intervene in a crisis to help stem global turmoil, the finance minister said Monday.

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A bill to be introduced in two weeks’ time will be about “strengthening the supervision of the banking system, making it easier to intervene if a bank gets into trouble (and) giving new powers to the regulators,” said Alistair Darling.

In a keynote address to the governing Labour Party’s annual conference, Darling said the new banking reform bill will be introduced when parliament’s lower House of Commons returns from its summer recess at the start of October.

He added that the government would also be giving new protection to savers and that he had asked the independent Financial Services Authority (FSA) regulator to “review urgently” how to improve the system.

“I can promise that wherever weaknesses are found in the financial system — whether in the powers of government, the Bank of England or the FSA — I will take steps to deal with it,” the chancellor of the e