LONDON, March 2 EMBARGO 0001 GMT
The Bank of England's new deputy governor, Charlotte Hogg, needs
to take steps to avoid possible conflicts of interest in her
role as one of Britain's top financial regulators, senior
British lawmakers said on Thursday.
Hogg told a parliament committee on Tuesday that her brother
helped set strategy at Barclays, but that she had not
decided for certain if she would remove herself from decisions
which affected his employer.
She also said she saw no potential for conflict of interest
over her mother's role as a non-executive director of the
Financial Conduct Authority, Britain's main regulator to combat
irregularities in markets.
The Bank of England has wide-ranging powers over British
banks, and Hogg will be its deputy governor for markets and
banking, sitting on committees that set interest rates as well
as decide bank capital rules and other key regulatory issues.
In a report on Hogg, published on Thursday, the committee
said she had sufficient professional competence and personal
independence to be deputy governor, but needed to do more to
avoid any real or apparent risk of impropriety.
"Steps will need to be taken to ensure she puts in place
arrangements to address conflicts of interest or the appearance
of such conflicts," the report said without giving details.
The Treasury Committee lacks the power to block BoE
Members of the committee also reiterated concerns about a
lack of diversity of thought among BoE policymakers - a factor
they blame for the central bank's patchy forecasting record and
poor preparation for the 2007/08 financial crisis.
Hogg was previously the BoE's chief operating officer, and
comes from a background in retail banking, in contrast to most
members of the BoE's Monetary Policy Committee who have advanced
qualifications in economics.
During Tuesday's hearing, she was more comfortable with
lawmakers' questions on financial regulation than those relating
to economic theory.
"We recognise that the value Ms Hogg will bring to the MPC
is from her operational experience in the financial services
sector, rather than a field more directly applicable to the
conduct of monetary policy," the committee said.
(Reporting by David Milliken Editing by Jeremy Gaunt)