Watchdog head urges composure on possible merger with MNB

Parliament

The possibility of a merger between Hungarian financial market regulator PSzÁF and the National Bank of Hungary must be thought out in a composed manner, the watchdog's head, Károly Szász, said in an interview published in daily Magyar Nemzet on Thursday. Different versions of a possible merger, in full or in part, must be considered, and the advantages and risks weighed, Szász said. He added that any such decision would be taken at the highest political level and would not depend on PSzÁF or the MNB. György Matolcsy, the MNB's recently appointed governor, has said that he would support a merger with PSZAF if one is initiated by the government or the governing parties. He noted earlier in April that strengthening the rights of oversight of the central banks became a global trend -- one especially prevalent in the European Union -- after 2008. The practice of maintaining supervisory authorities and regulators independent of the central bank has “proved to be inappropriate,” he added. Prime Minister Viktor Orbán said in a radio interview a week earlier that the government was holding off on a decision to merge the MNB and PSzÁF.

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