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Independent Commission on Banking - why Northern Rock failed



Northern Rock


Why did it fail?

Virgin again targeting Lloyds branches

Virgin Money is being tipped as a possible bidder for the 632 branches put up for sale by Lloyds Banking Group after receiving financial backing from a new group of investors, according to reports.

Gary Hoffman's NBNK rules out Northern Rock bid

A FAVOURITE to buy Northern Rock, led by its former chief executive, effectively ruled itself out of a bid for the lender last night.

As widely expected Chancellor George Osborne used his annual Mansion House speech last night to announce the Government intends to sell the nationalised bank back to the private sector.

He said: "The independent advice I have received is that a sale process is likely to generate substantially the best value for the taxpayer and should be explored as a first option."

Banks facing tougher rules on liquidity to prevent Northern Rock-style collapses

Banks could be forced to stockpile £110billion or more of extra government bonds under new rules designed to prevent Northern Rock-style collapses.

The Financial Services Authority wants banks to hold more liquid assets, including easily saleable bonds, at a potential annual cost to the sector of £2.2billion.

Firms are already sitting on nearly £300billion of ultra-safe assets, but the watchdog will demand they increase holdings to insure banks against market seizures like the one that torpedoed the Rock in September 2007.

Banks will alternatively have to show they are reducing their reliance on short-term funding, meaning loans of less than three months' duration.

Restructuring aid to Northern Rock: Official Journal of the European Union


Invitation to submit comments pursuant to Article 88(2) of the EC Treaty

(Extract from) CONCLUSION


The Commission doubts at this stage that the aid measures included in the new restructuring plan are compatible with the common market. In particular, on the basis of the information available to it, the Commission cannot ascertain whether the notified aid is limited to the minimum necessary and the distortions of competition outweigh the positive effects of the aid.

State aid: Commission extends in-depth investigation into UK aid package for Northern Rock

The European Commission has extended the scope of its in-depth investigation under EC Treaty state aid rules, launched on 2 April 2008 (see IP/08/489), into a UK aid package for Northern Rock, following substantial amendments notified on 30 March 2009.

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