The UK’s major banks have agreed to be held accountable to a new banking standards body called The Banking Standards Review Council.

The body will be voluntary to join and funded by the industry, with Barclays, HSBC, Lloyds, RBS, Santander, Standard Chartered and Nationwide having all accepted the proposals.

The governor of the Bank of England, Mark Carney, is to chair a panel that will appoint a chairperson of the new body.

Mr Carney said:

“I encourage all banks that operate in the UK, both domestic and foreign, to support this endeavour. We need a financial system that is safe, fair and acts with integrity.”

UK banks pledged to set up the body last year after a number of high-profile industry scandals, including the rigging of benchmark interest rates, breaches of anti-money laundering rules and the mis-selling of loan insurance and complex interest rate hedging products.

The body will be set up by former director general of the Confederation of British Industry (CBI), Richard Lambert, at the request of bank leaders.

Mr Lambert said that the body will be a champion for better banking standards in the UK. he said:

“Rebuilding confidence and trust in the banks is especially vital in the UK, because of the size of the banking system and the importance to the economy of London’s role as an international capital market.”

Photo by Billy Wilson