With the publication of the report into the structure of banking in the UK just published, it is apparent that what is needed is a radical separation of the investments and retail banking sectors. In other words, we need to stop the banks using our money to gamble on the markets…
Needless to say, the banks don’t want to do this. Hardly surprising as it will cost them a great deal of money to implement and reduce access to depositors’ funds to be used for their own nefarious purposes. But Osbourne says he is adamant that this must happen and that he will legislate ‘in the lifetime of this parliament’.
But of course there is a big difference between legislating and making something happen…
In reality nothing will actually happen until the end of this decade by which time if the TUC gets it’s way there may well be a change of government – God help us – and that leaves ample time for the legislation to be overturned.
The argument is, of course, that this move will adversely effect the banks’ grossly overinflated profits and that this will be passed on to consumers in some form of price hike. Or that if we make the banks uncompetitive in this way, then they will take their business overseas and this will cripple our already ailing economy. We can legislate for the first and frankly I simply don’t believe the second.
There is no doubt that this change needs to happen, but it needs to happen now. It is simply not good enough to put through some new law before the next election. What we need is for the banks to be split apart BEFORE the end of this parliament.
Get your finger out, George, and let’s see if this government walks the walk as well as talking the talk!