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The Bank of England and Financial Services Bill [HL] is a government bill prepared by the Cabinet Office. The Bill received its first reading in the House of Lords on 14 October 2015, and is due to be read a second time on 26 October 2015. As set out in the Bill’s Explanatory Notes, it seeks to:

[A]mend governance and accountability arrangements at the Bank of England (the Bank), expand the scope of and make changes to the Senior Managers and Certification Regime, permit the extension of the Government’s Pension Wise service, and allow for some flexibility to change which legal entities are authorised to issue commercial banknotes in Scotland and Northern Ireland.

The Bill is split into three main parts. The first sets out the proposed changes to the Bank of England’s governance and to procedures connected to its accountability. The second includes a number of provisions linked to the regulation of financial services, particularly the introduction of the Senior Managers and Certification Regime (SM&CR). The third part of the Bill contains provisions on the issuing of banknotes in Scotland and Northern Ireland. This Library Note discusses some of the changes in parts one and two of the Bill in further detail, particularly those related to the Bank’s governance, the new accountability arrangements, and the changes to the SM&CR.


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