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05-05-2023 09:43

Nordea leads the discussions at this year’s EuroFi 2023 conference in Stockholm

EuroFi 2023 is one of the most important events on the calendar for bringing together leaders from the finance industry and policy makers. This year both Stephen Hester, Board Chair, and Frank Vang-Jensen, Group Chief Executive Officer, were in attendance alongside other members of the Nordea Group Leadership Team.
EuroFI 2023

Nordea’s senior leaders were at the centre of discussions with European politicians, ministers, commissioners, policymakers, regulators and high-level bankers on key topics of the day during this year’s EuroFi 2023 conference in Stockholm.

Lessons learnt from the global financial crisis

During an on-stage interview Stephen Hester discussed how banks often reflect their customers and the societies in which they operate. A stable and strong financial sector is essential to navigate periods of financial uncertainty. One important form of protection for a bank is a strong, well-balanced business model with no dominating business segments or products. According to Stephen Hester, the financial system has so far coped very well with the stresses in the economy, and banks are overall in good shape, thanks in large part to reforms made since the global financial crisis. As seen in the recent US case, banks should always avoid the divergence of reality from books and records. Regulation should be respected, and consistency, equality and predictability ensured by lawmakers.

A harmonised approach

Frank Vang-Jensen joined a panel to discuss financial stability risks in Europe. He noted that despite the recent market turmoil and problems in some specific banks both in the US and Europe, the European banking industry has overall been stable and resilient due to robust rules across Europe and a strong supervision.

“ We have come far in Europe but there is still too much variation in regulatory practices than should be the case in the area. Macroprudential buffers are applied in the different ways for individual banks, also taking into account the local regulations and requirements. This shows that the overall consideration and holistic view needs to be strengthened”.

According to him, predictable and harmonised regulation in Europe is key to ensure confidence and stability in the markets.

“ Strong and profitable banks like Nordea promote stability and support their customers and broader society in both good and challenging times”, Frank Vang-Jensen concludes.

Martin Persson, Head of Large Corporates & Institutions

Challenge of the century, opportunity of a lifetime

Martin Persson, Head of Large Corporates & Institutions at Nordea, took part in a debate around “Sustainability risks in the banking sector.” At Nordea, the goal is to support customers in their transition towards a more sustainable and net-zero future, including those in carbon-intensive industries. During the panel discussion, Martin Persson observed that if regulation becomes too rigid or short-sighted, it risks becoming counterproductive, limiting the banking sector’s ability to help its customers transition to a more sustainable future.

According to Martin Persson, a restrictive client selection approach would work against the European Banking Authority’s guidance and achieve very little beyond moving financing to other financial service providers that may not be as committed to driving real change.

Sara Mella, Head of Personal Banking.

Digitalisation trends in Europe – and its opportunities for customers

Sara Mella, Head of Personal Banking, joined a panel of experts to discuss the digitalisation of financial services in the EU. With greater digitalisation resulting in increased data sharing, Sara argued that the most important factor for legislators to succeed with future-proof regulations will be to find the right balance between customer needs and expectations on the one hand, and risks related to increased data sharing and speed of services on the other.

EuroFI 2023

Eurofi was created in 2000 with the aim of contributing to the strengthening and integration of European financial markets and the related policy work. Eurofi organizes annually two major international events for open and in-depth discussions about the latest policy developments impacting the financial sector and the possible implications of on-going macro-economic and industry trends.

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