Our monthly round-up of news, ideas and initiatives related to transforming the UK financial system for people and planet, compiled by the Lab’s CEO, Jesse Griffiths.
Who really owns what?
The new register of owners of offshore-registered UK companies reveals 40 individuals currently under sanctions, while many thousands more haven’t bothered to submit their details. Plus there’s a major loophole – no register of offshore individual ownership to match the one for companies.
Here’s a useful UN briefing on the state of play of making beneficial ownership information public (a.k.a. ‘knowing who owns what’).
Thankfully, the UK government has finally agreed to reform corporate criminal liability. And it’s given in to common sense (and some great campaigning) and will make failure to prevent fraud and money laundering an offence, in line with bribery and tax evasion.
Did you know there’s been no independent regulator for debt collection? Until now.
MPs say the Payment Systems Regulator’s plans to let Pay UK take charge of reimbursing scam victims are flawed.
Climate campaigns take off
Make My Money Matter has launched a great new campaign to stop banks financing new fossil fuels (and secured some high profile celebrity endorsements). And a coalition has launched the ambitious ‘one for one’ campaign to radically change how banks (and central banks) deal with fossil fuels.
Investors are urging European banks to end new oil and gas financing, while for the first time the US debt market has raised more money for renewables than fossil fuels.
The top 10% richest produce half the world’s greenhouse gas emissions – new UN report.
BankTrack has a great new website. And ShareAction has a new report on how the world’s largest asset managers voted on environmental and social proposals.
Who sets the rules?
Architects of the post-global financial crisis regulatory improvements are not impressed with the government’s new ‘Edinburgh reforms’. Bizarrely one government minister suggested that banks should sue the regulators over rules they don’t like. Meanwhile, the City is fighting back against rules designed to protect consumers.
Is there really a pot of pension money for long-term investment?
And the Digital Pound could arrive by 2025 – here’s a (long) critique.
NatWest posts largest profits since 2007. More ammunition for the campaign for a bank windfall tax.
Inequality and exclusion
In a display of levelling down, the North of England receives one of the lowest levels of investment of all developed countries.
The world lacks a system to deal with the increasingly unsustainable debts of developing countries.
A shocking 20% of the UK population are living in poverty – according to a new Joseph Rowntree Foundation report.
Why economics has become like Catholic theology in medieval Europe.
And here’s an amusing Ted Talk on how to smash a Ted Talk.