Weekly Global News Wrap: Long journey for EU banks' green goals; Wall Street banks to flaunt resilience before Congress
And Greece's Alpha Bank taps JPMorgan, Goldman Sachs for plans to boost capital.
A sense of urgency is needed to plug data gaps on how banks in the European Union disclose their green credentials, the bloc's banking watchdog said.
The European Banking Authority in March set out how banks would have to publish a groundbreaking "green asset ratio" or GAR as a core measure of how business activities are climate-friendly, as defined in the "taxonomy" compiled by the bloc. GAR measures the ratio of climate-friendly assets like loans and debt securities to total assets on a bank's books.
The EBA revealed that based on a pilot exercise, its first estimate of the GAR currently stands at 7.9% on an aggregated basis for EU lenders, indicating a long journey to get closer to 100%.
Wall Street bank chiefs will tout the role their institutions have played in getting the US economy back on track when they appear before Congress, but are likely to face tough questions on social and economic issues.
In a prepared testimony, the CEOs highlighted their banks' resilience during the pandemic and their efforts to support struggling clients. They also flagged their work on other priorities, including efforts to address climate change and structural racism.
Whilst the hearings are unlikely to result in policy proposals, they are politically risky for the CEOs as scrutiny of their industry grows in Washington under Democratic leadership.
Alpha Bank, one of Greece's four largest lenders, has hired JPMorgan and Goldman Sachs as advisers on a plan to boost capital by about $980m (EUR800m) to fund growth plans.
"The proposed capital raising seeks to take advantage of favourable market conditions and the bank's strong financial position," Alpha Bank said in a bourse filing.
The bank said it viewed prospects for the Greek economy as "especially positive" and wanted to support the government's efforts to boost economic growth and attract foreign investment.