Labour plans 'to refer banks to competition authorities'

Labour plans to refer high street banks to the competition authorities immediately if elected in 2015, the party leader is expected to say in a speech on banking reform.

Labour party leader Ed Miliband. Credit: PA/PA Wire/Press Association Images

The Guardian reports that Ed Miliband will say in a speech on Friday that he wants the proposed review by the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) to complete within a year of the election, and anticipates it could lead to a breakup of the larger high street banks, such as RBS or Lloyds.

Mr Miliband is expected to argue that greater competition in financial services is central to restoring Britain's long-term economic prosperity and providing consumer choice.

Read: MPs reject Labour motion to cap RBS bonuses

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Miliband to call for limit on banks' market share

The Labour leader Ed Miliband is to propose a cap on the share of the market for high street banks. Under the move, the party could force some of the "big five" banks to sell more branches to smaller firms.