Two directors of HSBC’s operations in the UK have quit in protest ahead of tough new rules that could result in jail terms for reckless bankers.
The Evening Standard reports that Alan Thomson, who is on the board of the international bank’s UK subsidiary, is planning to leave at the end of this month. John Trueman, the deputy chairman, is preparing to resign but has not yet formally done so.
The moves come as proposals for rules to make senior bankers more accountable were unveiled by the regulators.
The Prudential Regulation Authority is consulting on proposals until the end of this month under which senior staff could face criminal liability if their bank fails and they are subsequently found guilty of reckless misconduct.
Under the regime, which regulators want to be in force by January next year, the onus would be on bankers to prove they behaved appropriately.
Critics say this amounts to an overturning of the principle of innocent until proved guilty and claim banks will struggle to attract high quality directors.
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