No protectionism from Europe: Barnier

EU financial services commissioner Michel Barnier sought to calm US fears of discrimination over European financial services reforms that would regulate hedge funds.

“No market, no product, no territory will rest in the shadows of intelligent regulation, efficient supervision,” said Barnier on France’s LCI television.

But “there will be no European protectionism if there is no American protectionism, there will be one regulation,” he added.

US Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner recently wrote to Barnier to hit out at a draft European Union law that would tighten restrictions on the investment funds, warning they may curb the ability of US hedge funds and private equity groups to do business in Europe.

EU leaders have since delayed putting into place regulations on hedge funds. The plan they had been considering would have required EU-based funds to obtain a “passport” to conduct business across the bloc, while it had not been decided what to do with funds based outside of Europe.


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