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Home>Graham Bishop - Biography

Graham Bishop - Biography

Graham Bishop is renowned for his vision and the courage to propose radical ideas, yet ground them in a mastery of the technical details of the financial system... to the extent that he has even been referred to as a one-man think tank. 

Due to his influence at the meeting point of politics, economics and finance, President Barroso appointed him in 2013 to be a member of the European Commission's Expert Group looking into initiatives for the joint issuance of debt in the form of a redemption fund and eurobills (link to Commission press release; Graham’s press release).

For more than a decade, Graham has been developing a proposal for a ‘Temporary Eurobill Fund’. He presented the idea to both the European Commission and  European Parliament, as well as around the EU. As a result, the concept has evolved substantially. Such a development would change the euro area government debt market dramatically and mark another step towards "Completing the Economic and Monetary Union." Graham Bishop’s Plan for a Temporary Eurobill: 30 FAQs

A dedicated Europhile, Graham offers his experience and insights on a pro bono basis in key fields to EU policy-makers. His influence with them has built up since the early 1990s, when he pointed out to the Maastricht Treaty negotiators that government debt would have a fundamentally different quality in a common currency. He went on to play a key role in designing the changeover to the euro of national currencies, and of Europe’s capital markets. 

His 182 monthly ‘Brussels for Breakfast' meetings/Zoom videos in the City of London attracted a wide array of senior officials and government affairs specialists from major financial institutions. Following the meeting,  the Chartered Institute of Securities and Investment (CISI) conducted a live webinar to assist its members' Continuing Professional Development (CPD)  - a major activity of Graham Bishop.

Graham's pro bono activities reinforce his consultancy services as his deep knowledge of Europe’s financial system is integrated with his understanding of EU economic and budgetary policy-making – within the necessary framework of democratic accountability. His influence was recognised publicly in 2012 when EurActiv published the first ever ranking  of the 40 most influential Britons on current EU policy-making, listing Graham at number 33. 

He is a well-known consultantspeakermedia commentatorand author of books and articles

Graham’s interests have spanned financial markets, economic/budgetary policy and democracy for several decades. He is no stranger to the European Commission's groups, having been on the Maas Committee in 1994/5 (preparing the changeover to the single currency); a member of the Financial Services Strategy Group in 1998/9 (creating the Financial Services Action Plan); and a member of the Giovannini Group. The European Parliament also nominated him as one of its two members of the first Inter-Institutional Monitoring Group and he is a Board member of the Kangaroo Group. He has been a Special Advisor to the House of Commons Treasury Select Committee and has given evidence to the House of Lords European Committee's update inquiry on the euro area.

The technical nature of the financial system has changed dramatically and the political impact of modern financial markets is now undisputed. Will they now maintain the euro – or fracture it? Graham Bishop believes that market discipline has a vital role to play in maintaining fiscal sovereignty; here again the interaction of monetary union and political sovereignty is reinforced. His long-standing interest in these matters lies at the heart of his consultancy work.

European Institutions

European Commission: Mr Bishop was a member of the European Commission's Expert Group on Redemption Funds and Eurobills (link to Press release). He was a member of the Commission's Consultative Group on the Impact of the Euro on Capital Markets (the Giovannini Group). He was a Member of the Commission's Strategy Group on Financial Services (1998 – creating the Financial Services Action Plan) and the Committee of Independent Experts on the preparation of the changeover to the single currency (1994/5).

European Parliament: He was nominated by the European Parliament to be one of its two members of the first Inter-Institutional Monitoring Group, as foreseen by the Lamfalussy Report, and was Rapporteur for the spring 2003 and November 2004 Reports.

Kangaroo Group: (link) Elected to the Board in 2005 and re-elected in 2007, 2009, 2011, 2013, 2015, 2017,  2019 and again in 2021.

United Kingdom

House of Commons: Mr Bishop was a Special Advisor to the Treasury Select Committee in its examination in 2003 of the implications for United Kingdom membership of the Single Currency. He advised the Treasury Committee on the corresponding reports in 1998 and 1996.

House of Lords: He gives evidence frequently to the House of Lords European Affairs Committee - most recently in Novemeber 2015. He was a Specialist Adviser to the House of Lords Select Committee on the European Union in its 2003 inquiry into The Barriers to Competition in the Internal Market for Financial Services.

European Movement (UK): He was elected as Vice-Chairman of the European Movement (UK) in 2017 - having been elected to the National Council in  2013, 2015, 2017 and 2019 after election to the National Executive in 2015. After retiring from the National Executive, he was elected Chair of the EM's National Council in January 2020.

Liberal Democrats: He was a member of the party's Europe Working Group and served on the previous Europe Group and the Globalisation Group.

City of London: Mr Bishop is a Freeman of the City and was Master of the Worshipful Company of World Traders for 2010/11.

Other Activities

He was Chairman of the National Council  of the UK branch of the European Movement in 2020, after many years on the National Council, Executive and Vice-Chairman. He is a Council Member, Federal Trust; and a member of the European League for Economic Co-operation (ELEC). Recently, ELEC has set up a Group of Wise Persons - led by the Netherlands Bank - to advise the EU on completing Capital Markets Union (CMU). During the debates on UK membership of EMU, he was a Council Member of both Britain in Europe and City in Europe; Chairman, London Investment Banking Association (LIBA) Committee on converting London's capital markets to the single currency; and Deputy Chairman of the Kingsdown Enquiry of the Action Centre for Europe (ACE) on the implications of EMU for Britain (1995 and 1997 update). He participates in studies and meetings of research institutes such as Centre for the Study of Financial Innovation (CSFI); SUERF and ELEC.

Mr Bishop graduated from Sheffield University in 1972 with a degree in Jurisprudence and worked for UK stockbrokers, Phillips & Drew, as an international economist with particular reference to equity markets. In 1979, he joined S G Warburg to manage pension fund portfolios. His emphasis moved from European equity markets to bonds and currencies, culminating in a move to Salomon Brothers/Citigroup in 1983. Initially, his economic commentaries covered the bond and currency markets of Europe. He authored Citigroup research on the issues surrounding monetary union after it became a serious possibility in 1988. As Adviser on European Financial Affairs at Citigroup in London, he reported to the Co-Chief Executives in Europe.


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