BANKING AND FINANCE
Governments, central banks and banks across the world have implemented generous measures to help businesses affected by the Covid-19 pandemic. In the UK, the government has offered loans to businesses through its Bounce Back Loan Scheme; Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme and the Coronavirus Large Business Interruption Scheme. Meanwhile, the Bank of England has lowered interest rates; set lower capital requirements for banks and boosted liquidity through the Covid Corporate Financing Facility for large employers. With its strengthened position and lessons learnt from the financial crisis of 2007-2009, the banking sector has played a key role in filling a credit gap, particularly for small to medium sized businesses by extending access to loans. UK banks have agreed that they will not pay any dividends to their shareholders that were still due from 2019, and will not pay any new dividends until the end of 2020.
As businesses gradually returned to the new normal, it is clear that banks are grappling with the twin tensions of supporting clients and the rise of non-performing loans, which leads to depletion of capital. Banks need to adopt resilient, efficient business models to survive the pandemic. Financial technology, artificial intelligence and the use of data are increasingly important in driving efficiency and customer support. Boardroom decisions have become more stakeholder friendly, especially towards employees, suppliers and creditors. Boardroom culture and composition will have to adapt to reflect changes brought by technology, home working and diversity.
In light of this unprecedented Covid-19 pandemic, abstracts are particularly welcome from papers focused on specific issues relating to the pandemic. However, abstracts are also invited from any general areas of Financial Regulation, FinTech and Corporate Governance. As the conference will be online, we encourage scholars and practitioners around the world to submit abstracts.