Financial Services Bill committee stage day one

03 July 2012

The Financial Services Bill continues committee stage, line by line scrutiny of the bill, in the House of Lords today (Tuesday 3 July)

Members of the House of Lords will continue to investigate how the Bank of England is run with changes to Clause Three of the bill. They will discuss objectives for improving financial stability, economic growth and employment.

Lords will also look at the role of the Treasury and the Financial Policy Committee in meeting the financial stability objective.

Committee stage day one: Tuesday 26 June

Before discussions started on amendments (changes) to the bill Lord Eatwell (Labour) spoke about the 'complex' general structure of the bill which led to a general discussion about its contents.'The issue is the straightforward drafting of the bill,' he said. 

The debate moved on to governance of the Bank of England and the role of a supervisory board in amendment one. Lord Eatwell withdrew the amendment saying: ' A number of important issues... are yet to be resolved.'

Lords turned their attention to the function of the deputy governors and whether the Bank of England needs additional deputy directors in Amendment three and four.

Lord Bishop of Durham spoke about the deputy governors' function: 'It seeks to balance the powers in the committees so that the deputy governors have control of their own special areas and are capable of ensuring that the committees focus on the areas that they know well,' he said.

Lords Sassoon (Conservative) responded saying: 'We are not creating any new positions here. We are talking about two deputy governors who were created in the Bank of England by the Bank of England Act 1998.'

Lord McFall of Alcluith (Labour) moved Amendment Five (later disagreed) and suggested a pre-appointment consultation. He said: '... this is about the concentration of power in and the accountability of the governor in the new financial system.'

What is committee stage?

Detailed line by line examination of the separate parts (clauses and schedules) of the bill takes place during committee stage. Any member of the Lords can take part.

It usually starts no later than two weeks after the second reading and can last for one to eight days or more.

The day before committee stage starts, amendments (changes) are published in a marshalled list - in which all the amendments are placed in order. Amendments on related subjects are grouped together and a list (groupings of amendments) is published on the day.

During committee stage every clause of the bill has to be agreed to and votes on the amendments can take place. All proposed amendments can be discussed and there is no time limit, or guillotine, on discussion of amendments. 

Last stage: Second reading

About the bill

The bill was introduced in the Lords at first reading on 23 May. Members will now debate general aspects of the bill during the second reading.

The bill will amend the Bank of England Act 1998, the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000 and the Banking Act 2009 to make provisions about financial services and markets. It will also exercise certain statutory functions relating to building societies, friendly societies and other mutual societies.

The Financial Services Bill will amend section 785 of the Companies Act 2006, enabling the Director of Savings to provide services to other public bodies.

Further information

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