New course in the "Traffic Rules" of Finance
How does one come to teach financial regulation at HEC?
Jean-Edouard Colliard – After studying at the école Normale Supérieure (Ulm), I wrote a thesis on the microeconomics of financial markets before joining the research department of the European Central Bank in 2012. I had the good fortune of arriving when the banking union was being built: it was thrilling to see its construction from the inside, and to take part in it.
Then I wanted to return to academia. I had already had a chance to teach at HEC during my thesis, and I missed teaching. I also very much wanted to join the HEC Finance department, which is one of the best in Europe in terms of research.
- Why create a core course on financial regulation at HEC? What are the main themes?
Regulation is like the “traffic rules” of finance: you’re better off knowing it. And it just keeps getting stricter: look at the fines of several billion dollars that American banks just got hit with. The cost of breaking the rules is becoming prohibitive! The demand for employees trained in this expert field is therefore growing within financial institutions but also within companies – because regulation also has an impact on the way that they find financing. HEC wanted to create a new required course on this subject for all Finance Major and MIF students. It consists of 18 hours spread out over 12 class sessions, and was designed to give students a complete and up-to-date panorama of the rules and regulations in force – which are often rather opaque – and to encourage the development of cross-disciplinary thinking about the best way for companies and banks to adapt.
- How is financial regulation currently evolving?
The trend is the same everywhere. After the financial crisis, there was an increase in monitoring: the Basel III agreements in Europe, the vote on a Banking Union last April, etc. Now that the rules of the game have changed, we are entering into a phase for assimilating and implementing the new regulations. I think that some of them – but not all – could be beneficial for the financial sector, by allowing banking establishments to regain some credibility with customers and investors.