A relaxation in the rules governing the creation of new banks is yet to lead to a dramatic increase in the number of new high street players being authorised by the City regulator.
Figures published by the Bank of
Five banks were authorised in the 12 months to the end of March, similar to the average since 2006. Talks were held with another 25 potential applications.
The government wants to bolster competition on the high street, dominated by the big four banks -
The Bank's data does not include TSB, the high street bank spun out of 24% taxpayer-owned bank Lloyds last year and floated on the stock market last month, because it already had a banking licence.
The regulators were given a wider remit than just tackling competition on the high street and were instructed to look at ways of encouraging a range of new entrants, including in wholesale banking.
The report highlighted improvements in the process of authorisations, with 47 meetings before formal applications were made for a licence in the 12-month period compared with 48 meetings between 2010 and 2012. The Bank of
Bolstering high street competition could be a battleground during the 2015 general election as
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