Frankfurt, 8 May 2023 – Nina Schindler, Chief Executive Officer of the European Association of Co-operative Banks (EACB), highlighted the influence that EU regulators have on the day-to-day retail banking practices at the 21st Retail Banking Day 2023 organised by Börsen-Zeitung in Frankfurt under the motto "Next level banking - digital, smart and sustainable”.
Prof. Claudia M. Buch, Vice-President of the Deutsche Bundesbank, initiated the event providing insights on the German central bank’s regulatory perspectives on market stability.
Preceding the opening remarks, Nina Schindler, EACB CEO, reflected in her keynote on key regulatory initiatives in the pipeline at the European level that have the potential to significantly reshape the retail banking landscape in the years to come, notably the Retail Investment Strategy, the Open Finance and the European Framework for Digital Identity. For each of these policy areas there are a couple of angles that gain importance particularly for cooperative banks.
For the Retail Investment Strategy, the key concern for cooperative banks lies in the area of inducements. While this issue is also of concern to other financial institutions, there is a bit more riding on it for cooperative banks. This has to do with their client base, their large branch networks and their commitment to provide proximity-based services to each investor, regardless of location or affluence level. An inducement ban would compromise the access to investment advice to less affluent investors or those living in remote areas.
Nina Schindler, EACB CEO declared: “The EACB is alerted that the discussion on the EU Retail Investment Strategy has turned out to be so focused on inducements. For cooperative banks, the discussions should concentrate on the opportunity to simplify and render more coherent the different pieces of legislation on retail investments and on supporting the implementation of the sustainable finance framework to allow cooperative banks to support their customers in greening the European economy.”
With regards to Open Finance and Digital Identity, both are key in the debate on the data economy and how the availability of data can be put to best use for customers. One aspect in this context is how to organise the sharing of data. This should be done in a way that allows all interested parties in the open finance or digital identity framework to participate and build a business case. The other is how to organise responsibilities and liabilities. Cooperative banks believe that contracts are a key tool in this area.
Nina Schindler said “Both open finance and digital identity offer challenges and opportunities for cooperative banks, however the key is to ensure a business case for all parties in the increasingly complex retail banking value chain.”