German Code Of Conduct Push Takes Hit

May 15 2007 | 12:01pm ET

Germany has said it is confident that a voluntary code of conduct can be agreed upon by the end of this year, but that confidence increasingly appears to be misplaced.

G8 finance minister will not mention a code in its final communiqué after meeting in Potsdam, Germany, this weekend, Reuters reports, which is a victory for the United States and Britain, who are skeptical about the need for greater hedge fund oversight, and a defeat for Germany, which has used its presidency of the G8 to push the matter. According to the news agency, an earlier draft of the communiqué had included mention of the code.

Japan has reportedly sided with the U.S. and U.K. in opposing Germany’s initiative, and Chancellor Angela Merkel and Finance Minister Peer Steinbrück have not been vocally supported by their European allies on the issue.

Still, Germany does not appear to be waving the white flag. “Even if this term will not be used in Potsdam, don’t think that Germany has given up on this issue,” a senior finance ministry official told Reuters. G8 leaders will meet in Heiligendamm, Germany, in June.

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