Financial stability is fundamentally concerned with maintaining a stable provision of financial services to the wider economy - payments services, credit supply, and insurance against risk. A strong and resilient banking system is the foundation of financial stability, as banks are at the centre of the credit intermediation process between savers and investors. Moreover, banks provide critical services to consumers, small and medium-sized enterprises, large firms and governments who rely on them to conduct their daily business, both at a domestic and international level.
On 17 February 2011, the Government and the Bank announced the establishment of an interim Financial Policy Committee (FPC). The FPC will discharge its responsibilities with a view to protecting and enhancing the resilience of the UK financial system, including undertaking - as far as possible - the implementation of macro-prudential policy.
In support of these new responsibilities, the Bank's research interests can currently be grouped into three themes around macro-prudential policy: