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S u m m a r y o f t h e E B A 2 0 1 2 a n n u a l r e p o r t
7
Protecting consumers
While the EBA is mandated to maintain a high
level of regulatory supervision over Europe’s
financial markets and institutions, it also has
a key role to play in the protection of individual
consumers. In 2012, the organisation looked
into the potential risks to investors tempted to
venture into complex financial products, such
as contracts for difference (CFDs), without
having the requisite level of financial know­
ledge to fully understand the risks involved.
In October 2012, the EBA held its first Con-
sumer Protection Day, an event at which rep-
resentatives of the banking industry, national
supervisory authorities, consumer organisa-
tions and academia met and discussed issues
related to consumer protection and financial
innovation at the European level.
The EBA’s consumer trends annual report,
published in March 2013, will help define the
authority’s work programme for 2013. The re-
port identifies new trends and areas of con-
cern emerging for European consumers. The
report identified the following issues:
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indebtedness and responsible credit;
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transparency and levels of charges;
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scope of mis-selling of financial products;
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issues arising from specific products such
as foreign currency loans;
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payment protection insurance and complex
products;
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security of new technologies used for bank-
ing services; and
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emerging new forms of liquidity raising.
Operations activities
With continued support from Member States
and national supervisory authorities, the EBA
has worked hard to ensure it is ready to meet
the challenge of fulfilling its mandate in the
face of continued uncertainty in the financial
sector. In the running of its operations, the
EBA is fully committed to ensuring that:
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operational activities are effective and effi-
cient;
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legal and regulatory requirements are met;
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financial and other management reporting
is reliable; and
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assets and information are safeguarded.
Policy analysis and
coordination
In the context of the EBA’s policy analysis and
coordination activities, the EBA has been pro-
viding the legal analysis and support as well
as guidance on impact assessment method­
ology applied in the preparation and legisla-
tive drafting of the EBA policy, regulatory and
supervisory products (including technical
standards, guidelines, opinions, supervisory
recommendations, peer reviews, etc.). The
following were among the EBA’s coordination
activities:
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coordination of the supervisory training ac-
tivities offered to NSAs: in 2012, 10 sector­
al training activities were organised by the
EBA, and 13 cross-sectoral seminars and
four soft-skill courses were organised jointly
by all three ESAs;
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support to the EBA’s Banking Stakeholder
Group (BSG): in 2012, the BSG held five reg-
ular meetings and two joint meetings with
the EBA’s Board of Supervisors. It has pro-
vided eight opinions and one position paper
as well as its input through responding to
EBA public consultations;
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support to the EBA’s Review Panel: in 2012,
the EBA’s peer review methodology has
been agreed. Furthermore, the peer review
on the adherence to specific aspects of EBA
‘Guidelines on stress testing (CEBS GL32)’
has been initiated, which included the cir-
culation of a self-assessment questionnaire
by NSAs;
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support, together with other ESAs, to the
ESAs’ Board of Appeal, created in Decem-
ber 2011;
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contribution to the review of the European
System of Financial Supervision conducted
by the European Commission as per Article
81 of the EBA regulation, in cooperation with
other ESAs;
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coordination of the EBA’s policy and super-
visory work, both internally as well as with
external bodies (such as BCBS and IMF) and
EU institutions.