Competition body poised to look at (nationalised) bank competition

The Dutch competition authority NMa expects to soon start work on the implications of the nationalisation of SNS Reaal on competition between Dutch banks, the Financieele Dagblad says on Tuesday.

‘We expect to soon get a report from the NL Financial Investments foundation,’ a spokesman told the paper. The foundation manages the state’s financial investments.

The foundation already manages ABN Amro and insurance group ASR on behalf of the government. With the nationalisation of SNS, two of the big four Dutch banks are in state hands.

In his parliamentary briefing outlining the nationalisation, finance minister Jeroen Dijsselbloem said SNS would be handed over to the NLFI ‘as soon as possible’ and that attention would be paid to the ‘aspects which impact on competition’.


Last month, home owners’ lobby group VEH said the lack of competition in the mortgage market means mortgage interest rates are 1.3 percentage points higher than they should be.

The organisation says that with three of the four big banks enjoying state support, the way mortgage rates are calculated has become distorted. This is because the banks which have had state cash are more restricted in what they do.

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