PracticeAuditKPMG blasts bank for lack of accountability.

KPMG blasts bank for lack of accountability.

Big Five firm accuses European Central Bank of maintaining secrecy over its policies and causing market confusion

Big Five firm KPMG has launched an attack on the European Central Bank, accusing it of creating market confusion and shrouding its decisions in secrecy, writes Philip Smith.

The firm, renowned for its pro-euro stance, has told the Frankfurt-based bank to come clean on its interest rate decisions, accusing it of lacking accountability. Mike Rake, KPMG’s European chairman, said: ‘The ECB has to become more transparent and clear about its policies if it is to bridge the existing information gap.’

KPMG, which is due to publish its report and accounts next month, has frequently argued for increased openness from other organisations, particularly fellow accountancy firms.

The firm’s report called for the publication of interest rate decision minutes, similar to the Bank of England system.

KPMG’s chief economist Andrew Smith said the money markets found it difficult to connect the ECB’s actions with its policies.

‘At times it seems almost as if the bank thinks it is a good idea to keep everyone guessing,’ he said.

The report acknowledged the bank’s high level of independence, but said there was a need for ‘democratic accountability’.

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