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UK Finance represents around 300 firms in the UK providing credit, banking, markets and payment-related services. The new organisation takes on most of the activities previously carried out by the Asset Based Finance Association, the British Bankers’ Association, the Council of Mortgage Lenders, Financial Fraud Action UK, Payments UK and the UK Cards Association. Please go to for wider content and updates from UK Finance.

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Election results of select committee chairs announced

Week in Westminster

Published: 19 June 2015

The results of the election of select committee chairs were announced this week. Andrew Tyrie and Clive Betts were uncontested so were automatically election to the Treasury and Communities and Local Government committees respectively. The rest of the committee memberships will be elected in proportion to the membership of the House of Commons over the next few weeks.

The new economic secretary Harriett Baldwin answered oral questions on the subject of expanding shared-ownership; promoting full home-ownership and the Help to Buy ISA; and Right to Buy policies.

The governments proposals to extend right to buy to housing association tenants was also the subject of a range of probing written questions again this week. Labour MP Clive Betts asked what discussions the housing minister had had with mortgage lenders on the implications for lending. The minister Brandon Lewis responded by simply saying that ministers and officials are “engaging on an ongoing basis with lenders and other financial institutions in relation to key policy issues”.

Lord Kerslake, former permanent secretary at the DCLG, will chair a Commission on Affordable Housing in London. The new commission has been set up by the IPPR think tank to come up with new ideas for increasing housing supply and ways to unlock more land. The commission will report in March, aiming to influence candidates in next year’s Mayor of London election.

Stress tests for the banking sector has been described as “fatally flawed” for setting hurdles that the financial services sector would easily clear, according to a new report by the Adam Smith Institute. The think tank has called on the Bank of England to scrap its annual stress tests, arguing that they disguise weakness in the UK’s banking system.