Research phase of Project Carlton – new UK payment services design

Two weeks ago, in a blog on Finextra, we stated that our company had obtained initial funding and support for a project to design a new suite of UK payment services, to set against those being implemented by the UK’s New Payment System Operator (“NPSO”).

This project now has a name – Project Carlton – and […]

Wolfsberg Group should publish its Competition Law advice about its Country Risk FAQs, as a starter

Lyddon Consulting has sent the third and final call in its series to the Wolfsberg Group, this time regarding the “Country Risk – Frequently Asked Questions” that Wolfsberg issued in March 2018.

The call asks Wolfsberg put into the public domain the Competition Law advice it has taken about its governance and activities on a general […]

UK New Payment System Operator – the wrong direction and we need a new one

The UK’s New Payment System Operator is well adrift of the problems facing UK payment service users (e.g. lack of access to free ATMs, high fees on card payments for merchants, dwindling cash collection services) but it continues to build up its elephantine governance structure, with committees popping up right, left and centre, and sporting […]

The UK’s New Payment System Operator – March of the Advocrats

New Payments Systems Operator Limited – or NPSO for short – is the operator of the UK’s most important retail payment systems that move more than £6.4 trillion every year, through the Bacs Direct Credit, Direct Debit, Faster Payments, and Paym services. NPSO is a critical national infrastructure.

Disappointing it is, then, that the governance organs […]

Virtual Accounts: major changes needed in Wolfsberg Group guidance around “On behalf of” payments

We have today called upon Wolfsberg Group to make major changes to the section in the Wolfsberg Group’s Payment Transparency Standards 2017 on “On behalf of” payments.

The guidance is far from complete. In our view it has the effect of giving a clean bill of health to a range of services that are quite suspect […]

Bruges Group paper: the Euro’s Battle for Survival – into the Red Zone

We have had a paper published by Bruges Group setting out the extreme difficulties in which the Eurozone finds itself, after years of economic stimulus totalling over 3% of GDP per annum and the build-up of both the ECB’s Asset Purchase Programmes and the loans within the TARGET2 system.

These imbalances are insoluble, and there is […]

BACS and Faster Payments privatised to single private individual

In a shock announcement BACS and Faster Payments are being run, as of today, by a company controlled by a single private individual. This must be a first for a critical UK national infrastructure.

New Payment System Operator issued a press release to this effect this morning.

“Operational responsibility for the Bacs and Faster Payments systems, which […]

Calls for the withdrawal of Wolfsberg Group guidance on SWIFT Relationship Management Application (“RMA”)

Lyddon Consulting has today issued a call to the Wolfsberg Group of leading international correspondent banks that it withdraw its 2016 guidance “Wolfsberg Guidance on SWIFT Relationship Management Application (RMA) Due Diligence”.

You can download the Wolfsberg guidance here.

You can download Lyddon Consulting’s full paper here.

Bob Lyddon, director of Lyddon Consulting and former General Secretary of […]

Unicredit: Non-Performing Loans still badly under-provisioned and the Italian bank has a capital deficit

Unicredit’s 2017 Group results presentation shows that group Non-Performing Loans (“NPLs”) stand at €48.5 billion nominal, up from the €36.9 billion nominal as at the end of 2016, when the bank had taken €8 billion of supposedly “one-off” provisions as a charge to its Profit&Loss Account to bring the Carrying Value of NPLs down to […]

Is the ECB bankrupt, at least on a mark-to-market basis?

Yesterday Reuters published an article entitled “Restive bond markets may complicate ECB’s exit plans”.

This was a piece speculating about how and when the ECB can taper off and finish its Asset Purchase Programme (“APP”), and the piece stated that “Currency strength and a doubling of benchmark borrowing costs over just two months may be tightening […]