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Mark Carney opens up BoE to more MP scrutiny

Mark Carney 7 Feb Speaking

Incoming Bank of England governor Mark Carney has pledged to open up the institution to much greater scrutiny by MPs.

Giving evidence to the Treasury select committee last week, Carney said the TSC should have the statutory power to request information or order reviews into the Bank.

TSC chair Andrew Tyrie said he had been trying to obtain such as response for a long time and praised Carney for his “reasonable” steps.

Carney said he did not have “any objections” to such a power being enshrined in statute. Current governor Sir Mervyn King has resisted such a move.

In his written evidence to the TSC, Carney said the Bank must enhance “credibility” and “trust” through more scrutiny.

He pledged to assess the Bank’s accountability structures six months into the job and supports the newly created oversight committee.

Carney also faced a grilling from MPs over the vast powers of his role covering monetary policy, financial stability and financial regulation and was compared to a sun king, emperor and constitutional monarch.

Carney rejected the suggestion that he will be too powerful and claimed he will be able to keep abreast of the detail.

Informed Choice managing director Martin Bamford says: “These organisations need a degree of secrecy to be effective in their work. As long as the decision-making process is robust and the outcomes are reasonable, I don’t think we need to add layers of scrutiny to what is by necessity a fluid body.”

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