Angela, not you again! Who let you out of your box? Oh I see, your members are bit pissed off with Mervyn King. (Angela is CEO of the British Banksters Association) Why’s that? Because he’s reneging on the Project Merlin agreement. They thought the bankster bashing would stop if they agreed to start lending to businesses. Well Angela, I can see that they might be upset, but you know how it is with agreements, they’re not worth the paper they’re written on. They can be trashed or changed without any prior warning. Your members know that, they do it all the time!
So what else is worrying your bankster pals? He’s saying that another credit crunch could be on the horizon because nothing’s changed: “The problems are still there. The search for yield goes on. Imbalances are beginning to grow again.” That’s what the man said Angela, he’s the Governor and your members haven’t denied it. In fact their silence is deafening. I think the arrow hit home, don’t you?
Next? He’s still banging on about bonuses… and you thought Project Merlin meant that he’d lay off the subject. Trouble is Angela they’re obscene, and he’s right when he says that “…people are angry when they hear about the super-sized salaries and bumper bonuses awarded to bankers”. You see it’s not as if they’re being dished out to really talented people. Last week you said that ‘you either pay the going rate in an industry or your workforce walks down the road’. Well you see there are going rates and going rates. I think it’s time they were let go to test your theory. There are plenty of able young banksters to fill any gaps – and at a much lower rate. Give it a go?
“If it’s possible to make money out of gullible or unsuspecting customers, particularly institutional customers,[they think] it is perfectly acceptable.” This has really got you going, hasn’t it? Oh come on Angela fess up, you know it’s happening. Your members are up to their old tricks again. It’s in their blood, they can’t stop themselves. It’s part of banking culture. Ripping us off is what they do!
Now just so that you understand, Mervyn is on our side, okay? He’s got your number and he’s got the Chancellor’s number too. He’s well aware, as are we, of the attempts of your members, and the Chancellor, have made to knobble Sir John Vicker’s independent commission on banking over the breaking up of the banks. Mervyn may have been ‘surprised public outrage over bankers’ failures had not been greater’, but make no mistake, if fundamental reform doesn’t happen, ‘you aint seen nothin’ yet’. Now, back in your box!