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Watchdog plans to boost staff by a fifth


ECB headquarters in Frankfurt

ECB headquarters in Frankfurt


ECB headquarters in Frankfurt

The European Central Bank's fledgling banks watchdog is planning to boost staff by more than one fifth, a person with knowledge of the matter said, as it tightens supervision of the sector.

The new European banking regulator's hiring plan underscores its ambition to get to grips with an industry that triggered a financial crisis, hammering national finances and even threatening the euro currency.

The ECB has already carried out stress tests of top banks across the 19 countries in the Eurozone and wants to delve deeper into their businesses to uncover further hidden risks.

"The plan is to add about 230 staff," the person said. The extra people, two thirds of whom will be hired next year with the remainder in 2017, comes as the supervisory agency takes more banks under its watch.

The ECB's supervisory arm, which is less than one year old, has already spent €300m hiring staff to monitor top banks. The lion's share has been spent on pay for its roughly 1,000 staff, a bill that ultimately goes to the banks being supervised.

The mainly Frankfurt-based ECB staff are in addition to those employed at national regulators, such as the Central Bank of Ireland. (Reuters)

Irish Independent