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MPs call for full national audit of FSA

MPs are calling for the Treasury to request an audit of the Financial Services Authority by the National Audit Office for only the second time in nine years.

During the public accounts committee on Monday, Conservative MP Richard Bacon said if the FSA had been audited by the NAO, weaknesses in the regulatory system may have been spotted earlier.

Speaking to Treasury permanent secretary Sir Nick MacPherson and UK Financial Investments chief executive John Kingman, Bacon said that if the NAO had been able to conduct value for money studies on the FSA “the problems that have been identified, would have identified earlier”.

PAC chairman Edward Leigh added: “Now since 2000, the rule is that you have to request the NAO to look at a specific part of the FSA and you’ve only ever done that once since 2000 and that was a fairly tangential inquiry.

“After all the FSA is primarily concerned about financial stability and protecting the consumer. you’ve asked the FSA to look at it once since 2000 and that was not about financial stability or protecting the consumer. That must be a worry now, mustn’t it?”

MacPherson said: “I’ve said that this needs to be looked at afresh. Obviously, it requires a ministerial decision. I am an official. But what I am saying to you is that we will look at it afresh. We will ensure that it is considered and that ministers take a view.”



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