By Nikki Tait in Brussels and Jennifer Hughes in London
Published: October 15 2008 20:06 | Last updated: October 15 2008 20:06
Accounting rules blamed by some banks for exacerbating the financial turmoil were eased in the European Union on Wednesday, bringing its 27 countries in line with changes agreed by international accounting rulemakers.
An EU regulators’ committee in Brussels voted unanimously to accept Monday’s emergency changes made by the International Accounting Standards Board. These will give banks more leeway in how they value certain assets whose prices have plunged. Lawmakers in the European Parliament soon endorsed the vote and member states gave their unanimous support. This means the changes, which are optional, can apply to calculations of banks’ third quarter results if they wish.