A useful overview of new investigations and inquiries into The Co-operative Bank and their legal framework.
Robert Peston reveals that the Financial Services Authority told The Co-operative Group as early as April 2012 that the bank had too little capital to be allowed to go through with the purchase of over 600 branches from Lloyds.
"So why did the FSA allow the Co-op Bank continue to chunter down the track towards this proposed massive expansion?
Vultures are circling around The Co-operative Group, looking for whatever they might be able to pick up for a bargain price. The Co-operative Funeralcare could be next, says this Reuters article. These funds are motivated purely by profit, but if we join together we can put pressure on them to keep the bank ethical, and eventually return it to ownership by its customers.
According to Robert Peston at the BBC, the hedge funds acquiring a majority stake in The Co-operative Bank "can only refuse to put the additional £125m of cash into Co-op Bank if creditors fail to vote for conversion of Co-op Bank's £1.3bn of bonds and prefs into shares and new bonds.
"So they don't have a lot of leverage to improve the terms of the deal.
We released a statement on the Bank's proposed new Articles of Association, published on 14th November. In our view the commitments are not strong enough to withstand commercial pressures and protect the Ethical Policy of the bank. Full statement here.
The Co-operative Group announces that Len Wardle has resigned as Chair of The Co-operative Group and from the Board, with immediate effect. He will be replaced by Ursula Lidbetter, currently Group Deputy Chair and Chief Executive of the Lincolnshire Co-operative Society.
On 18 November the Co-operative Group issued a statement to media:
“Given the serious and wide-ranging nature of recent allegations, the new executive management team has started a fact-finding process to look into any inappropriate behaviour at The Co-operative Group or The Co-operative Bank and to take action as necessary.
A short explanation of what is going on with the Co-operative Bank and why we are campaigning.
MEDIA RELEASE FROM ETHICAL CONSUMER MAGAZINE - FRIDAY OCTOBER 25 2013
A new campaign is urging existing Co-op Bank customers not to move their accounts from the Co-op in an effort to ensure that the bank sticks to its ethical principles.