Bank power and public policy since the financial crisis

Huw Macartney, David Howarth, Scott James

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Despite much commentary in the media and the popular assumption that
the banking industry exerts undue influence, the academic literature on
the role of the banks since the crisis remains theoretically and
empirically under-specified. In particular, we argue that different forms
of bank power are often conflated, while favourable policy outcomes are
too-readily assumed to be evidence of regulatory capture. In short, we
still know relatively little about how bank influence varies over time and
between different national contexts, the extent to which banking
interests are unified or divided, and the conditions under which banks
are capable of producing meaningful variation in policy outcomes. This
article has three objectives: 1) to explain why the debate on bank
influence matters; 2) to examine the evidence of bank influence since
the financial crisis; and 3) to set out a range of conceptual tools for
thinking about bank power.
Original languageEnglish
JournalBusiness and Politics
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 21 Nov 2019


  • bank power
  • financial crisis
  • public policy
  • financial regulation
  • interest groups


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