The head of the Office of Fair Trading - the country's main competition and consumer protection watchdog - is to step down later this year, the OFT said Thursday.

OFT Chief Executive John Fingleton said he had not yet decided on his next career move and he did not set a specific date for his departure.

The OFT has the right to refer industries or certain takeovers to the Competition Commission watchdog if it feels there are problems arising from the creation of a monopoly or a lack of competition within a certain industry.

Earlier this month, Fingleton said the banking industry may need another investigation by the Competition Commission.

(Reporting by Sudip Kar-Gupta; Editing by Myles Neligan)