THE DAY OF
so-called top bankers brought the country to
its knees and wonder what the fuss is all about.
so few in a dire economic conflict suffered so
little and repenteth so little for so much disaster
to so many.'
WHAT THEY SAID-AND
Heathcote Amory examines what the Fallible Four
bankers told the committee of MPs yesterday, and
what they really meant.
Hornby, asked about the value of the JobSeekers
Allowance, worth £60,60 a week, replied: Sorry,
I...Oh, I'm sorry it's...I don't know the precise
amount but it's a very low quantity of money.
JSA, what on earth is that?
Never heard of it. But perhaps that's because,
despite being sacked for running his bank into the
ground, he's still being paid £60,000 a month as a
consultant to advise on , of all things, which jobs
, to cut.
Asked about an HBOS risk manager who complained that
the bank's 'sales culture' was going too fast, and
that it was taking TOO MANY RISKS, Lord
Stevenson insisted: ;everything to do with risk
management is TAKEN REALLY SERIOUSLY by the bank'.
We took it
seriously, in fact, that the RISK MANAGER was SACKED
and subsequently awarded a payout at the INDUSTRIAL
TRIBUNAL. He was replaced by someone who'd
NEVER WORKED in RISK MANAGEMENT before, but
presumably could be TRUSTED TO SHUT UP and let the
bank get on with making even greater PROFITS.
Asked if there were more brilliant bankers than him,
Sir Fred Goodwin replied: 'There may well be. It
would seem unreasonable of me to conclude that there
I've never actually met one,
despite my virtually SINGLE-HANDEDLY destroying one
of BRITAIN'S GREAT FINANCIAL INSTITUTIONS with my
Asked about his bank's response to accusations that
it wasn't taking RISK SERIOUSLY, Lord Stevenson
replied: 'Carefully arranged risk management
systems , developed over the years with OUR
REGULATOR , did not spot scenarios coming up that
have come up.'
I BLAME THE GOVERNMENT
for introducing a REGULATORY REGIME that allowed us
to go on this GIANT CREDIT-FUELLED BUYING BINGE and
NEVER pulled us up SHORT.
Asked about his qualifications to RUN
A BANK, Sir Tom McKillop replied: 'I had a very
strong numerate background...I carried out
postdoctoral research at an applied mathematics
institute in Paris.'
years ago, I studied advanced maths for a year and
went to some bistro, which is why it was fine for a
chemist who knew virtually NOTHING ABOUT
FINANCE to be chairman of a GIANT BANKING
Asked about bankers and their
moral compass, Sir Fred Goodwin replied: 'I am not
aware of a basis in questioning my integrity.
opinion of myself as an outstanding individual is
completely undented by what happened, I DON'T FEEL
GUILTY, and I have NO INTENTION of HANDING BACK any
of the MONEY that I WALKED OFF WITH.
Lord Stevenson: 'We are profoundly and unreservedly
sorry. All of us HAVE LOST A GREAT DEAL OF MONEY...'
with my colleagues, I've been told that I've GOT TO
SAY SORRY and I'll do that, but I MOSTLY FEEL SORRY
ABOUT THE DAMAGE TO MY BANK BALANCE and MY
REPUTATION, because I DON'T BELEIVE THAT I REALLY
DID ANYTHING WRONG.
WELL THIS SUMS IT
UP WE FEEL MOST ACCURATELY-NEED WE SAY MORE.