Thorburn joins Prudential Regulation Authority Board
(29 July 2015 – Britain) Former head of Clydesdale and Yorkshire banks, David Thorburn has joined the board of the Bank of England’s Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA).
Thorburn, worked in the banking sector for 36 years and was also the chair of the Confederation of British Industry in Scotland, and President of the Chartered Institute of Bankers, also in Scotland.
Another high profile bankers, Norval Bryson will also join the PRA, stepping down from his non-executive roles as a director at high street bank TSB and as deputy chairman at Scottish Widows Group.
Bryson worked in the insurance sector for 27 years, predominantly at Scottish Provident.
Bank of England governor Mark Carney welcomed the pair: “David’s considerable expertise in retail and commercial banking will be of great benefit as will Norval’s exposure to the insurance sector and extensive experience as a non-executive director.”
The PRA board must have a majority of independent members, and the appointment of the two financiers from outside the Bank of England means the regulator can appoint another internal member in the form of Paul Fisher, the PRA's deputy head, who is now able to join the board.
The PRA is responsible for managing the stability of the United Kingdom’s financial sector, including performing annual stress tests for the biggest lenders to see how well they can withstand financial strains.
The regulator has also taken steps into ensuring individual managers and executives at finance firms are held accountable for their actions, for example by implementing rules to claw back bonuses paid to bosses if the firm collapses thanks to their actions.
But each of these measures is controversial – forcing lenders to raise capital buffers can limit lending, for example, while critics say tough accountability rules could dissuade some candidates from applying to become directors of firms.
As a result the PRA is keen to bring in more industry experience to sit on the board and oversee its work.