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RAPPORT

Financial Markets Regulatory Outlook 2018

Bringing it all together

Another year has passed, so what has changed? This time last year we expected 2017 to be a period of uncertainty for financial services regulation. Financial services firms were challenged by the continuing lack of clarity over the final shape of post-crisis reforms, the implications of Brexit and a new US political administration. We also saw significant pressures on the banking and life insurance sectors from sluggish economic growth and low interest rates in Europe and the US, and competition from new entrants (particularly “FinTechs”). Looking ahead to 2018, most of these challenges and uncertainties remain.

There are reasons for caution. Asset markets and prices have seemed impervious to the prospect of tighter monetary conditions and geopolitical tensions. This has left many commentators worrying that markets are in the grip of a bout of irrational exuberance. There are also signs of price bubbles in commercial and residential property markets, as well as leveraged finance markets, and of elevated levels of consumer indebtedness, particularly in the advanced economies.

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