by Eurofinas, the voice of consumer credit providers in Europe
· FOCUS ON ·
WELCOME TO THE FIRST ISSUE OF THE
TOWARDS IMD 2
The European Commission is currently
CONSUMER CREDIT BULLETIN EUROPE
reviewing the Insurance Mediation Directive
(IMD) with the clear objective to move
Thank you for your interest in the first issue Eurofinas, the voice of consumer credit
towards an IMD 2. The proposal for the
of the Consumer Credit Bulletin Europe. This providers at European level, is ideally placed to
new directive is likely to be ready by the
newsletter represents the latest effort by help you do just that.
end of 2011. Find out about the contem-
Eurofinas to bring Europe closer to the industry
plated changes that are of relevance to the
and aims at keeping you informed of the most I hope you will find this newsletter useful and
consumer credit industry.
relevant European and international policy would very much value your feedback on
developments in the field of consumer credit. this first issue.
INTERVIEW The provision of retail financial services is Happy reading,
being increasingly regulated at European
Bruno Salmon, Chairman of BNP Paribas
level. Keeping abreast of what is happening Tanguy van de WERVE
Personal Finance shares his views on the chal-
in “Brussels” has become essential in order to Director General
lenges and opportunities for the consumer
anticipate future regulatory changes and stay email@example.com
credit industry going forward.
ahead of the curve.
RESPONSIBLE LENDING A FEW WORDS FROM PEDRO
The European Commission has recently
published a proposal for a directive on credit
agreements for residential property. Although
GUIJARRO, EUROFINAS’ CHAIRMAN
• At the time of my appointment as I am most grateful to Bruno Salmon,
its scope is restricted to the provision of
Chairman of Eurofinas, I stressed the Chairman of BNP Paribas Personal Finance
home loans, a number of points deserve the
importance of continuing to strengthen for having accepted to contribute to this
consumer credit industry’s utmost attention.
the representative voice of the European inaugural issue of the Consumer Credit
consumer credit industry in Brussels and Bulletin Europe by sharing some of his
further afield. In views on the challenges facing the industry.
RESULTS OF EUROFINAS order to do so, we
have undertaken These challenges will be discussed at length
STATISTICAL SURVEY ON a number of initia- at the Annual Convention of the European
CONSUMER CREDIT tives, and this Consumer Credit Industry which will take
newsletter is one place in Vienna on 29 & 30 September.
According to a recent survey of Eurofinas
more step towards The Convention has become the reference
members, the European consumer credit
raising the profile event of the year for senior consumer credit
market stabilised in 2010 and the outlook
and visibility of professionals from across Europe and I look
for 2011 is more positive.
Eurofinas. forward to seeing you there.
A unique opportunity to reflect on where the industry is heading
and meet your peers! Plan to attend and register here
29 & 30 Sept. 2011
See page 8 for more information Vienna, Austria
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TOWARDS IMD 2
Practical thinking is key
• The European Commission is currently an insurance undertaking, or of another inter-
reviewing the Insurance Mediation Directive of mediary that already meets the requirements,
December 2002 (IMD). It is expected that it will should be subject to a different treatment than
make a proposal for a new Directive (IMD 2) those which do not. Such a distinction already
towards the end of 2011. exists in IMD but needs to be reinforced in IMD 2
so that Member States cannot deviate from it.
IMD 2 has become a necessity in order to
remedy the many inconsistencies resulting Consideration should also be given to i) the
from the diverging transposition and the gold- fact that some intermediaries do not act as
plating of IMD at national level. independent advisers/brokers, ii) the level
of risks for consumers and iii) the nature
More fundamental changes are in the pipe- and level of sophistication of the distributed
line however. The possible application of the products. This is important as the regulatory
Directive to direct writers, the removal of existing framework for insurance distribution can have
exemptions, the management of conflicts of a direct impact on the availability of insur-
interest, and the provision of advice on insur- ance products and coverage characteristics,
ance products were some of the other points in particular when it comes to basic low risk
put to stakeholders in a recent consultation. insurance products.
Eurofinas believes that an efficient, fair and In addition, particular attention should
high-quality regulatory framework for insurance be paid to the management of potential
intermediaries requires avoiding a one-size- conflicts of interest, as the CEIOPS/EIOPA Measures related to the management of
fits-all approach by adapting the statutory (the European supervisor in charge of insur- conflicts of interest should be based on the sole
requirements to the various distribution chan- ance) did not sufficiently take into account activity of the intermediary. Those interme-
nels used and the type of products distributed. the insurance mediation sector’s operational diaries that do not advise consumers and do
and economic reality in its November 2010 not receive any fees from them should not be
While a one-size-fits-all approach applying recommendations. Eurofinas concurs with the subject to stringent technical requirements.
irrespective of the types of intermediaries Commission that insurance intermediaries
and products distributed is arguably attrac- should act professionally and in line with their Last but not least, the application of the IMD
tive from a theoretical viewpoint it would not customers’ interests. A clear and transparent framework to direct writers remains an open
create a real level playing field as the market framework is beneficial for providers, interme- question. If they were to be included in the
players are different and have different objec- diaries, and their customers alike. However, new IMD, would such an extension be a source
tives. A one-size-fits-all approach would the proposal to disclose to the consumers the of confusion? Would the Insurance Mediation
negate the diversity of market structures, intermediaries’ remuneration will fall short Directive then turn into an Insurance Directive?
distribution channels and insurance products. of providing a proportionate and well-suited We should know soon.
It would also probably fail to pass any propor- regulatory response to the issues at stake.
tionality test (at least for those intermediaries
distributing simple, easy to understand, low
cost and short duration insurance products in
an ancillary capacity).
Distinguishing between the roles and respon-
GREEN LIGHT Finance and Leasing
The Association of Danish Finance Houses
sibilities of the consumer credit providers and
those of their point-of-sale partners (motor
FOR POSITIVE DATA
dealers, retailers) is particularly important in • The Danish Data Protection Authority recently gave its green light for the establishment of a posi-
this context. Indeed those insurance interme- tive credit database in Denmark. Finans og Leasing, the Danish member of Eurofinas, is currently
diaries acting under the full responsibility of working on the database project. The database is expected to be operational as of early 2012.
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in order to remain competitive in an ever more
BRUNO SALMON regulated environment.
Other challenges include adapting to
1. Mr. Salmon, tell us about yourself consumers’ new needs and expectations,
and becoming more innovative in order to
Since joining Cetelem in 1972 I have held a variety remain attractive and be able to gain or regain
of positions within the group. I was successively the confidence of consumers.
Head of Marketing, Head of Sales and Marketing in
France and Head of the French Network. Following Technological progress in the fields of BRUNO SALMON
the merger of Cetelem and UCB, I became Deputy e-commerce and m-banking is a true opportu- Chairman, BNP Paribas Personal Finance / President,
Association Française des Sociétés Financières (ASF)
CEO and member of the Board of Directors of nity for consumer credit providers.
BNP Paribas Personal Finance. I fear that specialised consumer credit providers
3. What makes specialised credit providers will suffer most from these new requirements,
Since 2008 I have been the Chairman of BNP ‘special’? What do they do differently, more which were originally targeted at other types of
Paribas Personal Finance and in June last or better than high-street banks? institutions. Also, this must be seen in a context
year I became the Chairman of the French where, depending on the registration country
Association of Financial Companies (ASF). Apart from rare exceptions, specialised of the mother company, not all institutions will
consumer credit providers are the only ones have to comply with these requirements.
2. What are the biggest threats, challenges or offering credit at the point of sale. This, in my
opportunities for the industry going forward? opinion, is, and will remain, the specificity of 5. What are, in your view, the key aspects
specialised providers. of responsible lending? What is the Cetelem
In my view, the most important threat for Foundation?
the industry is that of a very restrictive and Specialists are the only ones to have developed
ill-suited regulatory framework. the necessary processes and tools to provide Responsible lending has been a guiding prin-
credit instantly. Unlike banking institutions that ciple of BNP Paribas Personal Finance for
First consumer-driven regulations that are restrict their offer to their existing customers, a long time. It has even been registered as
coming from the Consumer Credit Directive and specialised providers have developed a specific a brand name in France since 2004.
the variety of ways in which some of its provi- know-how in risk management and behaviour
sions have been implemented across Europe patterns of borrowers. Our risk management Responsible lending is essential in order to
are examples of that threat. tools are therefore more sophisticated. increase, or restore, consumer confidence
towards credit and credit providers. This
Other challenges include 4. What are the impacts of legislation devel- cannot be just a motto; it must be completely
oped in Brussels and at international level integrated into the lender’s processes and
adapting to consumers’ new on your business? marketing approach. It implies always acting
needs and expectations, and in the interest of the applicant borrower.
to become more innovative European and international regulations have
more and more of an impact on our business. In this context, the Cetelem Foundation, estab-
in order to remain attractive This impact can be vital, as in the case of lished in 1992, provides consumers with
and be able to gain or regain the introduction of new solvency and liquidity educational programmes to improve their
the confidence of consumers. ratios for lending institutions. budgeting skills. The Foundation is the combi-
nation of Cetelem’s knowledge and the expertise
But even more, the consequences of some of The new Basel 3 rules will require institutions of external teachers. The educational mate-
the Basel 3 requirements, in particular the new to have more capital and sufficient assets to rial, as well as the training of the teachers, is
liquidity ratios, risk being extremely damaging ensure liquidity. These requirements will auto- provided by the Foundation, which cooperates
for the consumer credit industry, unless correc- matically lead to an increase in pricing. There is in France with five well-known associations.
tive actions are taken at EU level. a distinct risk that as institutions start meeting Many members of our staff participate in the
the new liquidity requirements, demand for activities of the Foundation on a voluntary basis.
The industry faces important organisational eligible assets will far exceed the offer, which
challenges as we need to decrease manage- will have severe market implications. This risk We are currently thinking of developing similar
ment costs to compensate for the unavoidable has, in my view, been underestimated by regu- projects in other European countries such as
increase of the costs of funding and capital lators so far. Italy, Portugal and Spain.
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INTEREST RATE RESTRICTIONS APRC FOR
Eurofinas calls for further analysis
• Is there a need for pan-European interest rate
restrictions? This is, in short, what was discussed
The desirability of credit access for low-income
borrowers and the degree of product innova- CREDIT
by European stakeholders while responding
to a European Commission consultation on
tion are, and should remain, local questions.
Eurofinas warns against the profound struc- AGREEMENTS
interest rate restrictions earlier this year.
For the moment, different types of pricing control
tural and technical changes in the consumer
lending business that any European regula-
tory intervention in that field would bring.
mechanisms for credit agreements coexist across This should not, however, preclude conducting Towards an amendment
Europe with different underlying rationales. further analysis on market exclusion in general of the CCD?
The impact of these mechanisms varies and existing alternative finance mechanisms
depending on the type of restrictions in place, for low-income borrowers. • The European Commission has recently
the structure and maturity of the market and/ launched a comitology procedure on the
or the type of providers. Given the situation, it The study further finds that there is no proven calculation of the Annual Percentage
is very difficult to draw any common conclu- correlation between interest rate restrictions Rate of Charge (APRC) for consumer credit
sion. What is clear however is that interest rate and reduced levels of over-indebtedness, a point agreements. According to this comitology
restrictions impact market characteristics and consumer groups might well dispute. Further procedure, “non essential” elements of the
business structures in a substantial manner. analysing the preventive and reactive treat- Consumer Credit Directive (the CCD) can
ment to over-indebtedness in European markets be modified/adjusted by the Commission
A recent study, conducted by a German would probably help identifying reliable trends with the help of a committee, thereby
consultancy firm at the request of the at European level and should be encouraged. avoiding going through the lengthy ordi-
European Commission, has confirmed that nary legislative procedure (i.e. through
interest rate restrictions reduce access to Eurofinas will closely monitor this issue and the Council and the Parliament).
credit, in particular for low-income borrowers, report on relevant developments in future
and impact the diversity of products on offer. issues of Consumer Credit Bulletin Europe. On 3 March 2011, the committee,
composed of national regulators, decided
that APRC deserved further work at
European level. This is because several
DID YOU KNOW? regulators currently experience difficulties
in implementing the CCD provisions and
• In September 2010, Eurofinas organised
assumptions on APRC calculation.
a Roundtable discussion on interest rate
restrictions in Brussels. The aim was to bring
After due consultation of a number of
together European Commission officials and
experts, the committee will decide in early
experts from different markets and profes-
June whether the CCD shall be amended
sional backgrounds (lenders, academics,
and/or whether guidelines should be
solicitors) to share their experiences and
published on APRC calculation. It is widely
exchange views on pricing restrictions.
believed that amending the Directive
RoundtablRate The main points presented and discussed
would imply the addition of further
InteRest ns at the Roundtable are summarised in
assumptions on APRC calculation.
RestRIctIo a report on interest rate restrictions
For the moment, problems identified by
published by Eurofinas and available on
the Committee remain limited. However
new issues are likely to be raised,
especially by CEE countries.
For further information, please contact
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RESPONSIBLE European level and that it represents a major
step in consumer protection across the EU,
intermediaries offering home loans. It is
unclear at this stage how national regulators
LENDING in particular when it comes to creditworthiness
assessment and prudent lending decision-
making. The transposition of the CCD into
will interpret such provisions and whether they
will be tempted to extend these requirements
to consumer credit intermediaries.
Member States legislation also brings substan-
tial changes to lenders’ current business Finally, the Proposal introduces a number of
practices, which are deemed to be beneficial. worrying regulatory requirements such as
the obligation to deny credit in the event of
Consequently, Eurofinas urged European poli- a negative creditworthiness assessment.
cymakers to wait for the CCD provisions to be Where an application is rejected on the basis of
fully implemented and to conduct an appro- an automated decision, the consumer should
priate impact assessment on business practices have the opportunity to request that the deci-
and consumer protection before considering sion be reviewed manually.
any further regulatory action in the field
of consumer credit. The Commission’s deci- Such requirements deserve the utmost atten-
sion to restrict the scope of its Proposal to the tion from the consumer credit industry to avoid
provision of home loans is therefore a positive any overlap between regulatory frameworks.
development. However, a number of important
concerns remain. Preliminary views from the European
• The European Commission has recently Parliament and the Council of Ministers should
published its Proposal for a directive on Firstly, the CCD was fully or partially extended be known before the summer break. Eurofinas
credit agreements for residential property. to home loans by 15 Member States. It is is following this issue very closely.
The Proposal follows several months of therefore important that these Member States
consultation of a number of stakeholders on restrict the transposition of the future Directive
responsible lending in which Eurofinas actively
participated. Initially aimed at covering all
on credit agreements for residential property to
home loans exclusively and avoid any exten-
‘business to consumer’ transactions, the initia-
tive was later restricted to the provision of
sion to the consumer credit sector. Failing to
do so would compromise the general consis-
home loans. tency of the European regulatory framework.
In its response to the consultation, Eurofinas
argued that the Consumer Credit Directive
Secondly, the Proposal contains a number
of specific requirements for the registra-
(CCD) ensures sound lending practices at tion, authorisation and supervision of credit • In March 2011, the Association of
Consumer Credit Information Suppliers
(ACCIS) and the European Credit Research
Institute (ECRI) launched a report on
POLISH EU PRESIDENCY ‘The European Credit Information
TO BEGIN IN JULY The report is based on a survey of
• From 1 July 2011, Poland, Denmark and the Polish presidency. The full list of priorities 30 credit bureaus in 23 countries and
Cyprus will hold the rotating trio presidency will be determined after due consultation of provides information of interest to
of the European Union for eighteen months. the other Member States and European insti- providers of consumer credit.
Poland will be the first of the three Member tutions and in accordance with the European
States to conduct the work of the Council of Commission’s agenda for 2011, the long- This study was undertaken to provide a
Ministers and will do so until 1 January 2012. term EU agenda, as well as by problems that clear understanding of how credit bureaus
may arise during the presidency. Denmark operate, what data they collect and
The new EU financial framework and and Cyprus’ views will also be taken into supply, and data protection restrictions.
the strengthening of the EU internal market account as Poland’s partners in the upcoming
were mentioned among initial priorities of trio presidency.
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EUROPEAN CONSUMER CREDIT MARKET
STABILISED IN 2010
• European consumer credit providers, repre-
sented through Eurofinas1, granted new loans Chart 1: Total New Credit, 2002-2010
worth €324.5 billion in 2010, an increase 15%
of 0.7% compared to 20092. This modest
increase was driven by a significant increase
in mortgage lending (17%). However, new 5%
lending provided for total consumer credit, 0%
which accounts for 71% of the Eurofinas total, -5%
declined by 2.8% in 2010.
The survey shows that Eurofinas members -15%
account for approximately 46% of the total -20%
2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010
outstanding loans for consumer credit and
consumer car finance in the 14 countries
reporting. Eurofinas members reported €428
billion of outstanding loans at the end of 2010 While new lending has not reached the levels There were substantial recoveries in new
compared to a total market of €937 billion. seen before the financial crisis, it is significant lending for total consumer credit3 in Nordic
that new lending has returned to positive countries such as Finland (18%), Denmark
Chart 1 shows the trend in total lending by growth in 2010. (15%) and Sweden (12%). However, larger
Eurofinas members between 2002 and 2010. markets such as Germany (-8%), the UK (-6%)
The evolution of total lending by Eurofinas and Italy (-5%) showed declines, leading to an
members between 2009 and 2010 is shown overall decline of 2.8% when exchange rate
Chart 2: Total Eurofinas Lending - New Credit
(in billion €) in Chart 2. While industrial credit and mort- fluctuations are excluded.
gage lending account for a small proportion of
2009 total lending, the growth in these two catego- It is positive that there was growth in some
CC for Personal ries was responsible for the modest recovery product categories and some member coun-
in total lending in 2010. tries in 2010. These results clearly indicate
Industrial Credit stabilisation following the sharp declines
317.9 € Of the various consumer credit products in 2008 and 2009. This points to greater
granted, it is encouraging that personal loans optimism for 2011, as signs of recovery in
Vehicle Finance returned to positive growth in 2010, with consumer spending should be more evident
new lending in this category increasing by given declining savings rates and gradual
0.5%. Recovery was slower in other categories improvements in consumer confidence and
such as revolving credit and non-automotive labour markets.
47.1 € credit at the point of sale (with new lending
Mortgage Credit 163.5 €
CC for Personal
Consumption decreasing by 3.5% and 5.1%, respectively). An increase in private consumption is a prereq-
25.2 € Nevertheless, this represents a marked improve- uisite for a self-sustaining economic recovery
ment compared to the more significant declines in Europe following the financial crisis.
of 2009 (-12.9% and -11.8%, respectively). Consumer credit typically plays a crucial role
88.7 € in fostering recoveries after a financial crisis,
Underlying the European trend, there were not least because it can give consumers simple
significant differences in market conditions and affordable access to finance.
across European countries in 2010 (see Chart 3).
Continued on next page >
1. The following Eurofinas members took part in the survey: UPC/BVK (BE), CLFA (CZ), BFACH (DE), Finans og Leasing (DK), ASNEF (ES), FKL (FI), ASF (FR), ASSOFIN (IT),
LVLKA (LT), VFN (NL), FINFO (NO), ASFAC (PT), AFINA (SE), FLA (UK).
2. The growth rates shown are adjusted to exclude the impact of exchange rate fluctuations. On an unadjusted basis, Eurofinas members’ overall new lending increased by 2.1%.
3. Total consumer credit = consumer credit for personal consumption + consumer vehicle finance.
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Chart 3: Total Consumer Lending* and Consumer Credit*, adjusted for exchange rate fluctuations
While the consumer credit industry can 30%
be more optimistic about the prospects for 25%
recovery in 2011, there are significant head- 20%
winds as well. For example, the ECB has begun 15%
to tighten monetary policy in the eurozone, 10%
consumer incomes are under pressure from 5%
rising inflation, and many governments are 0%
under pressure to stabilise their public finances. -5%
Despite the continued difficult conditions -15%
faced by the consumer lending industry in -20%
FI DK SE PT CZ BE FR NL ES NO TOTAL IT UK LT DE
2010, there has been a modest improve-
Total Consumer Credit Total Lending
ment in consumer spending and consumer
confidence throughout 2010. Signs of
recovery in consumer spending should be rates as households’ confidence continues *Total Consumer Credit: including Consumer Credit for Personal
Consumption and Vehicle Finance but not Mortgage Lending
more evident in 2011, supported by gradual to improve. For more information, please nor Industrial Credit.
improvements in labour market conditions contact firstname.lastname@example.org | Download *Total Lending: including Consumer Credit for Personal
Consumption and Vehicle Finance AND Mortgage Lending AND
across Europe and by declining savings the press release here Industrial Credit.
FOCUS RELAUNCH OF
ON VEHICLE THE SINGLE
• Consumer credit providers, represented
through Eurofinas, granted new loans worth • The European Commission adopted the
€88.7 billion for vehicle finance in 2010 Single Market Act in mid-April, in accor-
– a slight increase of 0.2% compared to dance with its work programme for 2011 and
2009 (a decline of -1.7% when adjusted 2012. Twelve priorities, which include inter
for exchange rate fluctuations). This slight alia developing alternative dispute resolution
overall increase was due to significant mechanisms, strengthening the digital single
recoveries in new credit granted for cars for more normal levels in 2010. Nonetheless, market, and simplifying the regulatory envi-
business purposes (18%) and commercial the overall decline in lending for new ronment for businesses, have been selected
vehicles in 2010 (8%). consumer cars masked significant increases from an original list of fifty proposals after
in some other countries such as the UK four months of consultation and debate in
Nonetheless, new credit granted to (11%), France (7%), Sweden (23%), Brussels. According to José Manuel Barroso,
consumers for purchasing new cars Portugal (21%) and the Netherlands (21%). President of the European Commission,
continued to decline in 2010 by -4.3% “all twelve have one thing in common:
to 38.3 billion euro, reflecting significant New lending to consumers for the purchase creating growth and jobs by better exploiting
declines in key markets such as Germany of used cars stabilized in 2010 showing the potential of the Single Market.”
(-25%) and Italy (-15%). This negative a modest increase of 0.2% to €26.4 billion.
trend in consumer car finance reflects However, it is a concern for the consumer The Commission will take stock of the prog-
the expiration of car scrappage schemes credit industry that new car registrations ress made under the Single Market Act at the
in several major markets. Following the have continued to decline in Q1 2011 end of 2012 and then undertake an extensive
exceptional year of 2009, it was inevitable (-2.3% according to ACEA, the European economic study to identify any areas with still
that consumer car finance would return to Automobile Manufacturers Association). unexploited growth potential.
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Mark the Date!
ANNUAL CONVENTION OF THE EUROPEAN
CONSUMER CREDIT INDUSTRY
A must attend event in the business leaders’ agenda
with the right balance between powerful content and REASONS TO ATTEND
high-level networking! · Highly informative presentations
· First-class speakers
• As the premier gathering for consumer credit · Real issues with a focus on practical
professionals, organised by Eurofinas, the solutions and experiences
Annual Convention of the European Consumer · Numerous networking opportunities
Credit Industry attracts all the leading players · Low registration fee
from across Europe and beyond. It is a unique
forum for open discussions on the many
challenges facing the industry.
AMONG SPEAKERS CONFIRMED TO DATE
David Betteley, Director Financial
Services, JLR Additionally, it provides tremendous oppor-
Jean Dornhofer, Senior Vice President & tunities for networking with senior industry
ABS team leader, Moody’s colleagues and is the only event organised by
Philippe Dumont, CEO, the industry for the industry at European level.
Crédit Agricole Consumer Finance
Marc Luet, CEO, EMEA, The 2011 Convention will take place in Vienna
Citicorp Consumer at the state of the art Austria Trend Hotel
Bernard Manuelli, Automotive Savoyen on 29 & 30 September.
Partnerships Director, International
Division, Crédit Agricole Consumer Finance Join us in Vienna and be part of the only
Vijay Ramchandran, Consumer Marketing European dialogue in your sector.
Head, EMEA, Citicorp Consumer More information on the programme and on how
Bruno Salmon, Chairman, BNP Paribas to register is available on the brand new dedi-
Personal Finance cated website at www.annual-convention.eu.
Gianluca Soma, CEO, SG Consumer Finance
Frank Witter, Chairman of the Board, Check the annual convention website regu-
Volkswagen Financial Services AG larly for updates. For more information, please
29 & 30 Sept. 2011
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EU COMMISSION TO ADDRESS
THE CURRENT SHORTCOMINGS OF ADR
Eurofinas calls for wider coverage
• In January 2011, the European Commission In its consultation, the Commission has identi-
launched a public consultation on the use of fied a number of shortcomings that it wishes
alternative dispute resolution (ADR) as a means to consider by November 2011. These include,
to resolve disputes. Also known as ‘out-of-court among others, low awareness of ADR schemes
mechanisms’, these alternative methods to by businesses and consumers alike as well as
obtain compensation have increasingly been numerous discrepancies between sectors and
used over the years. ADR schemes usually Member States.
involve a third party such as an ombudsman
or mediator to help consumers and businesses According to the Consumer Credit Directive,
reach an agreement. Compared to going ‘adequate and effective out-of-court mecha-
to court, it is widely recognised that these nisms are to be put in place’ for the consumer
schemes are usually confidential, cheaper, credit industry.
quicker and more informal.
In its answer to the consultation, Eurofinas
The debate on ADR started back in 2001 and
led to Recommendations by the Commission
called for a cross-sectoral coverage and
considers it as a sine qua non for any EU initia-
and a Green Paper. Since then, no further
measures have been taken.
tive on ADR. More information on Eurofinas’
position is available here.
• Alexandre Giraud, Eurofinas Senior
Legal Adviser, gave a presentation
on European policy developments at
EU CLASS ACTION? a Roundtable on Responsible Lending
organised by Eurofinas' Lithuanian
• Collective redress has been discussed at legislation, or for better protecting the rights of member association LVLKA in Vilnius,
European level for quite some time, both citizens. The set of principles resulting from the Lithuania, on 6 May 2011.
in the areas of competition and consumer consultation should guide any potential EU
policy. The positions of the various stake- initiative for collective redress. • Tanguy van de Werve, Eurofinas
holders on this issue are well known: business Director General, gave a presentation on
representatives are opposed to the introduc- Eurofinas opposes the introduction of new the European Regulatory Landscape at
tion of collective redress, fearing abusive collective redress mechanisms at EU level and the 2011 Auto Finance Summit, Berlin,
practices, while consumer representatives are believes that the Commission should begin Germany, on 24 May 2011.
strongly in favour of introducing class actions. with an impact assessment of existing legisla-
However, most stakeholders have warned tion, such as the Small Claims Regulation, on
the European Commission that due to the mass claims. Should the current framework of are also a viable alternative to judicial mass
different initiatives and discussions taking measures for addressing mass claims be found claims. However, should we go ahead with
place in its various Directorate Generals, there to be insufficient, existing legislation should be collective out-of-court settlements, a dedicated
is a risk of inconsistencies. adapted accordingly. discussion should take place on collective ADR
The Commission launched a public consul- Where rights are infringed, citizens and busi-
tation in January 2011 in order to identify nesses must be able to enforce the rights The Commission has indicated that it will
common legal principles on collective redress, granted to them by EU and national legislation. publish a Communication on the outcome of
so it could examine how these principles could Instead of EU collective redress mechanisms, the consultation before the end of 2011, after
fit into the EU legal system and into the legal alternatives should be considered. These which, it will be decided what EU initiative in the
framework of the 27 Member States. This include: the introduction of non-binding guide- area of collective redress will be taken, if any.
consultation explores in which fields different lines on the national systems or an exchange
forms of collective redress could have an added of best practices, which is applicable to all For further information, please contact
value for improving the enforcement of EU sectors. Alternative dispute resolution schemes email@example.com
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CONSUMER FIGHTING FRAUD
• Eurofinas is organizing a workshop
on 10 June 2011 in Brussels on the
lack of comparability between existing
consumer credit statistics in Europe.
The workshop aims to look at the lack of • On 10 May 2011, the Eurofinas-ACCIS At the meeting, the Task Force identified concrete
consistency in consumer credit statis- (the Association of Consumer Credit problems experienced when fighting fraud in the
tics collected at European level, and Information Suppliers) Joint Task Force on field of consumer lending and discussed possible
possible remedies. It will bring together Fraud Data met for the first time in Brussels. solutions and improvements to address them.
experts from national central banks, Part of the meeting was dedicated to an initial
national statistics institutions, EU Fighting fraud is an issue of common interest estimation of the size of fraud related problems
institutions, consumer credit providers to Eurofinas and ACCIS membership, in partic- within the consumer credit industry.
and consultancies with expertise in the ular the issue of access to and exchange of
area. Representatives of the European fraud data. Currently, the lack of harmonisa- The Task Force will consolidate its findings in a
Central Bank, Deutsche Bundesbank, tion in data protection rules at European level publication to ensure that robust engagement
Bank of England and Banca d’Italia will and the stringent nature of these rules are with EU officials can take place, especially for
make presentations on the collection obvious obstacles in the fight against fraud. those aspects of data protection of particular
of statistics. The Joint Task Force has an opportunity concern to the consumer credit industry.
to play an active role and suggest changes at
The workshop will provide participants a critical moment given that the Data Do you want to get involved in the Eurofinas-
with the opportunity to share experi- Protection Directive is currently being reviewed ACCIS Joint Task Force on Fraud Data? Please
ences, identify which issues lead to by the European Commission. contact firstname.lastname@example.org
a lack of data comparability, and assess
how these could be addressed in future.
For further information, please contact
WELCOMES ITS FIRST
INTERESTED IN BECOMING AN • Following the launch of its associate member- is to deliver market-leading, industry specific
ASSOCIATE MEMBER OF EUROFINAS? ship programme earlier this year, Eurofinas is solutions based on its proven products to the
delighted to welcome the White Clarke Group finance and leasing sectors within the interna-
• Requests for information on Eurofinas
as its first associate member for 2011. tional financial services market.
associate membership and related bene-
fits for 2011 should be addressed to
Since inception in 1992, the White Clarke The associate membership programme is
Anne Valette, Head of Communications,
Group (WCG) has focused on providing busi- aimed at enhancing Eurofinas’ relationship
ness technology solutions to the Asset Finance with players who have affinities or do business
sector. It has developed a depth of knowledge, with the consumer credit industry, but are not
expertise and a highly successful track record consumer credit providers themselves.
of building long term client relationships
across the globe. The WCG’s business strategy
10 print · next page
A FIRST MEETING • The Eurofinas Motor Finance Working Group
held its first meeting in Brussels on 28 April
DID YOU KNOW?
FOR EUROFINAS 2011. The Working Group was set up to
provide its members – lenders, both captives
• The Eurofinas Task Force on Insurance
Mediation held its first meeting on
MOTOR FINANCE and non captives, active in motor finance -
with a dedicated platform to discuss concrete
Thursday 10 February 2011 in Brussels.
The Task Force is a dedicated forum to
WORKING GROUP issues relating to relevant European policy
developments and market trends. The meeting
exchange views and share intelligence
on European developments in the field
was an opportunity to share views on market of insurance mediation that may impact
characteristics and local regulatory initiatives consumer credit providers. The input
as well as discuss how to best strengthen of the Task Force members was instru-
the voice and raise the visibility of the motor mental to the development of a robust
finance industry at European level. and substantiated Eurofinas position on
the European Commission’s review of
Do you want to be involved in the Eurofinas the Insurance Mediation Directive.
Motor Finance Working Group? Contact
NEWS FLASH FROM EUROFINAS
MEMBER ASSOCIATIONS Do you want to get involved in the Eurofinas
Task Force on Insurance Mediation?
• Kees Droppert, CEO of Credit Agricole Consumer Finance Netherlands has been appointed Contact email@example.com
as the new VFN Chairman in replacement of outgoing Chair Martin Aalders.
NEW CHAIR APPOINTED NEW CHAIR OF
FOR EUROFINAS LEGAL & THE EBIC CONSUMER
POLICY COMMITTEE CREDIT WORKING GROUP
• In December 2010, Bert Reitsma was • Edward Simpson was appointed
appointed the new Chair of the Eurofinas chairman of the European Banking
Legal and Policy Committee (LPC). Industry Committee (EBIC) Working
The LPC is the Federation’s decision- Group on Consumer Credit in May
making body in charge of legal affairs, 2011. Eurofinas is in charge of this
policy and advocacy. working group which is responsible for all
European policy developments related to
Bert Reitsma has worked over 15 years consumer credit.
in the financial services sector in various
capacities. Since early 2009, he has been Edward has been working at Eurofinas’
the Secretary General of Eurofinas’ Dutch UK member, the Finance & Leasing
member association, the Vereniging van Association (FLA), since January 2003. Head of Government
Secretary General, VFN Financieringsondernemingen (VFN). As Head of Government Affairs, he leads Affairs, FLA
the FLA’s UK parliamentary lobbying, and
European policy and lobbying work.
11 print · next page
NUTS AND BOLTS OF EUROFINAS
• Eurofinas is governed The Legal and Policy Committee may be Eurofinas' organization
by a General Assembly supported by ad hoc task forces and working
and a Board of Directors. groups. Task forces are created as needed
The General Assembly on specific issues and usually set up for a General
consists of all members limited period of time. Current task forces are Assembly
of the Federation, dedicated to insurance mediation, fraud data
while the Board of Directors is and prudential regulation. A Motor Finance
composed of representatives Working Group has also been created recently.
of the Federation’s members. The Chairman Board of
of the Board, currently Pedro Guijarro (ES), The Statistics Committee collects and anal- Directors
is appointed by the General Assembly for yses statistical data from the Federation's
a 2 year term, renewable. members in order to further the understanding
of the European consumer credit market, and
The Board of Directors is assisted in its work to support the activities of the Legal and Policy
by technical committees: the Legal & Policy Committee. This includes detailed data on Statistics Legal Policy
Committee and the Statistics Committee. consumer credit for personal consumption,
car finance, mortgages, and industrial credit.
The Legal and Policy Committee is respon- Statistical reports are published twice a year. Motor Join Task
Finance Force on
sible for, inter alia, analysing and shadowing The Committee is chaired by Umberto Filotto
Working Fraud Data
the various legislative proposals made by the (ASSOFIN, IT). The secretariat is provided by Group
European Commission. It develops arguments Jurgita Bucyte and Eoghan O’Briain, Advisers
and positions on EU regulatory and legisla- in Statistics & Economic Affairs. Prudential
tive issues that may impact the consumer Task Force
credit industry. The Committee is currently More information on the role and priorities of
chaired by Bert Reitsma (Vereniging van these committees, task forces and working
Financieringsondernemingen in Nederland, groups can be found on the Eurofinas website. Insurance
NL). The secretariat is provided by Alexandre
Giraud, Eurofinas Senior Legal Adviser.
• Consumer credit professionals are
joining the newly created Eurofinas’ • Anke Delava joined the Eurofinas Secretariat as a legal adviser in
affinity group on LinkedIn in great March 2011.
numbers. Contrary to many other
similar initiatives, Eurofinas’ LinkedIn A Belgian national, Anke has an LLB in European, International and
Group is restricted to consumer credit Comparative Law from the University of Sheffield (UK) and an LLM in
professionals. This makes it Europe’s International and Comparative Private Law from the Rijksuniversiteit
unique on-line community of consumer Groningen (NL). Anke is fluent in Dutch, English and Swedish.
credit professionals, which allows the
exchange of views among peers only. ANKE DELAVA Prior to joining the Secretariat, she worked as a legal adviser for
Join us! Legal Adviser for Eurofinas the Orde van Vlaamse Balies, the Flemish Bar Association of Belgium.
12 print · next page
SAVE THE DATE EUROFINAS STAFF
events / meetings
Board Workshop on TANGUY VAN DE WERVE ALEXANDRE GIRAUD
Director General Senior Legal Adviser
Brussels European Consumer firstname.lastname@example.org Legal & consumer affairs
Credit Statistics T +32 2 778 05 67 email@example.com
Brussels T +32 (0)2 778 05 64
07·08 29 29·30
Legal & Policy General Assembly Annual Convention
Committee Vienna of the European
Copenhagen Consumer Credit JURGITA BUCYTE EOGHAN O'BRIAIN
Industry Adviser Adviser
Vienna Statistics & economic affairs Statistics & economic affairs
November T +32 2 778 05 63 T +32 2 778 05 71
Legal & Policy Board
• For latest updates on events and meetings, simply consult the calendar ANKE DELAVA ANNE VALETTE
Legal Adviser Head of Communications
on Eurofinas’ website home page. Legal & consumer affairs Communications, marketing
firstname.lastname@example.org & media relations
T +32 (0)2 778 05 73 email@example.com
T +32 2 778 05 65
OFFICE IN BRUSSELS
Blvd Louis Schmidt 87
1040 Brussels - Belgium Av. de
T +32 2 778 05 60
F +32 2 778 05 78 OLIVIA FABRY INGRID VERMEERSCH
T M Petillon Junior Adviser Secretary
. L idt
T 23, 24, 25
(Internship until end of July 2011) Administrative support
T +32 (0)2 778 05 72 T +32 2 778 05 67
YOUR FEEDBACK COUNTS!
To provide feedback on this newsletter, or to be
added/removed from our mailing list, please contact
Eurofinas’ spacious meeting rooms and adjacent lounges are available firstname.lastname@example.org
for any Brussels meetings you may wish to organise. Please contact
13 Closing date: 25/05/2011 print