Back to All Areas of Work UK

Finance and Democracy UK

Britain’s oversized financial sector wields huge influence over not only our economy, but our democracy too. We need to change it.

The problem

Britain’s oversized and lightly regulated financial sector wields huge influence over not only our economy, but also our democracy.

For decades politicians have prioritised the growth of the City of London while neglecting other regions and sectors of the economy. Though the UK’s financial sector has grown astronomically, with UK banking assets totaling 563% of GDP in 2022, compared to just 32% in 1960, this growth has not been shared widely across society, and is too often at the expense of the wider economy. 

Our research has exposed the revolving door between politics and finance, how financial firms spend millions of pounds on influencing our political system, and how the sector dominates meetings with the Treasury.

What we need now

Positive Money seeks to counter the huge lobbying power of big finance, ensuring the public interest is properly represented in decision-making over economic policy and financial regulation. Rather than society serving the financial system, we can make sure the financial system serves society, supporting communities across the country with the services and investment they need.

As well as shining a light on the influence of big finance, we also feed into policymaking on a wide range of issues, from banking regulation, to access to cash, and green finance.

Milestones so far

  • We are a leading voice in the media commenting on issues with the financial sector and its regulation, and our research on the lobbying power of big finance has been widely cited

  • We’ve fed into and led civil society responses to consultations on topics such as regulators’ mandates, capital requirements, and new forms of money

  • The Financial Regulations Complaints Commissioner started publishing a register of interests on its website after we raised concerns over conflicts of interest

You might also like

Related Publications

Get the latest campaign updates