Tag Archive 'banking'

Jan 15 2014

How the elite is killing off the West

Published by under Opinion,Top Stories

Here is an opinion piece from the Financial Times which is so close to what I’ve been saying ever since the first day of the banking crisis, that Financial Times will forgive me for re-posting the piece here in full.

[Read on]

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Jul 11 2013

Of bankers, grey men and grey suits

Published by under Europe,Opinion,Top Stories

On October 6, 2008 I wrote  (here) under the headline “Cowboy capitalism is dead” that we’re heading back to the 1950s and 1960s, when bankers were “grey men in grey suits”, earning little more than the local school teacher. [Read on]

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Dec 10 2009

Fighting fire with fire

Published by under Opinion,Top Stories

The 50% tax on banker bonus payments proposed in London, is a step in the right direction. Now all the finance ministers in the world must follow this example, to effectively kill off the argument that skills go where the conditions are best. Conditions should be the same all over the world! There should be no place to hide! [Read on]

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Apr 06 2009

Why bankers are on their way to jail

Published by under Opinion,Top Stories

We are slowly moving closer to the point where senior bankers can (and will) be charged for fraud (in America and later also in other countries). Look at this interview to see why many bankers will sit in jail soon (well, maybe not soon, but in the next few years). [Read on]

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Mar 26 2009

The irresponsible Peer Steinbrück

Published by under Opinion,Top Stories

Peer Steinbrück, Germany’s minister of finance, likes to criticise the bankers (and their insistence on getting their bonuses paid) for their “irresponsible behaviour”, but what Steinbrück came up with yesterday (a few months before the election), is nothing short of “extremely irresponsible behaviour”. Apart from the fact that it doesn’t make sense from an economic policy point of view. [Read on]

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Mar 10 2009

About Forbes’ Global 2000 and banks

Published by under Companies,More News

When Forbes released its “Global 2000″ on 2 April last year, there were 17 South African companies on this list of “world’s biggest companies”.

Six companies with strong SA roots were listed as UK companies, ie. Anglo American, BAT, Old Mutual, SABMiller, Investec and Mondi. Richemont made the list as a Swiss company. 

So, in total 24 companies with SA roots made it onto the “Forbes 2000 Biggest” list last year. 

Look here who the 17 were and here to see how Forbes defined its “world’s biggest”. The first list was published in 2004.

Last year Forbes had this to say in its analysis of the list: Measured by number of companies (namely 315), the banking industry has the biggest presence on the Global 2000. Banking also dominates in assets, with total assets of $58.3 trillion, and profits ($398 billion).

Ha-ha…I can’t wait for this year’s list!

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Mar 06 2009

Standard Bank grabs share in Russian bank

Published by under Companies,More News

Standard Bank, one of South Africa’s biggest banks, has taken the gap opened up by the global downturn to get a better foothold in the Russian economy. It announced today the conclusion of a strategic partnership with Troika Dialog Group, a Russian investment bank, which includes getting a 33% stake in the bank. Read all about the deal here.

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Feb 06 2009

Fire them all!

Published by under More News,Opinion

I suggested recently banks should be nationalised, or partly nationalised and the remuneration of bank employees strictly regulated. Although I’ve often felt like it, I’ve never gone that extra step to call for the wholesale firing of everyone above a certain management level in banks on taxpayer life support. (The closest I’ve come, was this.)

Nadeem Walayat, a UK analyst and author of a very good newsletter (my opinion after reading it for a while), did that in his latest newsletter. Here’s an extract (he’s talking about UK bank and bankers):  

Bankrupt zombie banks being kept alive by over £800 billion of taxpayer capital injections, loans and guarantees are paying staff that should have been made redundant for gross negligence, and incompetence that borders on criminality, bonuses totalling in the billions. The fallout of what – to all intents and purposes – amounts to fraud on a monumental scale that has brought Britain to the verge of bankruptcy, is playing itself out across the land, as the economy falls off the edge because banks increasingly refuse to lend. There needs to be a wholesale clearout of the UK banking system, which means making ALL those who had ANY part in the crisis in their respective institutions redundant, including scrapping all of the boards of directors of the banks in which Britain now has a direct capital stake and literally unlimited exposure.

PS. The more I read economic history books on past economic crises, the more I’m convinced it was a major mistake to give banks so much freedom in the decades after the 1950′s. That freedom should be removed and never given back. Banking doesn’t need rocket scientists. It needs grey men in grey suits. 

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