David Prosser: European regulation not so scary after all

Outlook For those who do not share the europhobic tendencies often seen in the City, the development of the new European Securities and Markets Authorities is heartening.

London Stock Exchange boss Xavier Rolet is in good company in having publicly warned that Esma could be hijacked by French and Germans jealous of Britain's financial services sector. Treasury Select Committee MPs said the same thing to Michel Barnier, the EU's internal markets commissioner, in a hearing in December.

Their fears look increasingly unjustified. The Commission has already appointed a moderate Dutchman to chair Esma, plus Britain's Alexander Justham to its board. Now it has announced the appointment of Verena Ross as executive director. And while Ms Ross is a German national, she has spent years working for the Bank of England and the Financial Services Authority. George Osborne lobbied for her appointment. It's another one in the eye for europhobic conspiracy theorists.

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