Quite rightly the Bank of England has told banks not to pay any dividends (amounting to £8bn) during the current Covid-19 emergency, in order to:
-shore up the banks' reserves,
-send a signal to the markets and
-ensure that the banks don't have the excuse of limited funds when granting loans during this period.
The Bank of England has also asked the banks to forego bonuses, it is not yet clear whether the banks heard that request!
As a result of this, banks' shares have nosedived and dragged the FTSE down with them. However, this fall in the FTSE is likely only temporary once people see that the banks play their role in supporting businesses and individuals during this crisis...we hope!
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