Showing posts with label Bank of England. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Bank of England. Show all posts

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Same crap allover the place ...

Mark Carney, the incoming Bank of England governor, has appointed Charlotte Hogg, a senior executive at Santander and the scion of one of Britain's most blue-blooded political dynasties, to become the Bank's first chief operating officer.
Hogg, who heads Santander's high street operations, will start at the Bank on 1 July – the day that Carney takes over from Sir Mervyn King. The 41-year-old will head all the day-to-day management functions of the Bank – from personnel to property, IT and security – and become the most senior female employee in its 319-year history.
Hogg, who has been at Santander since September 2011, will collect the same £260,000 salary and benefits as the Bank's three deputy governors. It is a significant pay cut from the £2.5m she earned from Santander last year, including buy-out awards from her previous employer, the credit checking agency Experian.
Carney, who is joining the Bank from Canada's central bank where he reorganised the management structure, said he was delighted to have been able to poach Hogg from Santander. "My tenure at the Bank will oversee a significant transition," he said. "Charlotte brings an outstanding track record and breadth of experience that will help to catalyse that change and I look forward to working closely with her to realise the full potential of the new institutional structure of the Bank."
Hogg, who like Carney studied at Oxford and Harvard, started her career at the Bank before moving to McKinsey in Washington. She also worked at Morgan Stanley, before joining Experian as head of its operations in the UK and Ireland.
"I'm delighted to be returning to the Bank of England, where I started my career in 1992," she said on Tuesday. "I am looking forward to working closely with Mark Carney as he takes over the governorship."
Hogg is descended from one of Britain's most high profile political families – with both her mother and father holding life peerages. Her mother is Baroness (Sarah) Hogg, a senior adviser to Sir John Major when he was prime minister. Her father is Viscount Hailsham, the former Tory cabinet minister Douglas Hogg, who stepped down as an MP after claiming £2,200 expenses for cleaning the moat at his 13th-century country estate.
Her paternal grandfather was Lord Hailsham of St Marylebone, a former lord chancellor. His father, her great-grandfather, was also a lord chancellor. Her maternal grandfather was Lord Boyd-Carpenter, a former chief secretary to the Treasury.
"You can have too much of a good thing in one family," Hogg once told her local newspaper.  Paul Tucker, the Bank's deputy governor for financial stability who lost out on the top job to Carney, announced his intention to leave the Bank last week.  Santander UK's chief executive Ana Botín said: "During her two years at Santander Charlotte has reshaped our retail distribution business. Her work has made us a more customer-centred organisation and has put us in a strong position for further development."
Hogg's responsibilities at Santander will be taken over by Martin Bischoff and Miguel Sard. Prior to Hogg, the most senior woman at the Bank was Rachel Lomax, who served as a deputy governor from 2003 to 2008.

Monday, May 27, 2013

Hey Mario: what part of "FUCK OFF" don't you undestand.

EUROSMOKE AND LIES - “The answer to the crisis has not been less Europe but more Europe... The EU and the [euro] are no exceptions. The choice is between adapting them to the new conditions or do nothing and risk their dissolution.” The EU is a body primarily driven by pure politics without any ameliorating rational input from experts in economics markets science etc. Both the creation of the Eurozone and the FTT were political projects making extensive use of confirmation bias and totally ignoring expert advice. The Eurozone is a failure and the FTT will kill off the City as well as destroy markets inside the EU which both sovereign states and EU companies rely on. Politicians and bureaucrats taking the decision have never even heard of the repo market but they are about to find out how important it was once they destroy it. Rational thought would mean taking account of the views of experts on the FTT but the FTT is a political dream where there is no room for reality. If there was there would be no FTT. Any organization run by purely political decisions is going to lose out against a more rational response elsewhere in the world. I doubt the EU will ever base its decisions on rational thought processes rather than politics as there is no mechanism in place to force elite politicians to take note of experts. In their conceit they only see their own narcissistic beliefs as relevant to decision taking. Confirmation bias means that politicians start by already knowing the answers and see the job as putting their irrational policies in place. When policies do not work in the real world confirmation bias is called upon again to warp data to explain failure without ever seeing any need to change policy. Failure followed by more failure is guaranteed by the political approach. Pressure from the UK public to leave will increase noticeably once the FTT is in place and the City goes down the tubes. This will be extensively reported by the media. How often have we heard this before? You will never convince the average Brit that having more decisions taken by the unelected elite in Brussels is going to deliver anything for us. The nearer you get to a EUSSR the less the Brits will like it and the more we will want to leave. We have a totally different mentality to the majority of the EU who think that taking all decisions centrally will lead to economic success. That idea is seen as rubbish here and unworldly. To work in the real world the people taking the decisions would have to real experts in many fields and driven by rationality instead of politics. That can never happen in the EU as it is a political construct. Instead decisions are from over-conceited politicians and bureaucrats whose knowledge and understanding of the real world is minimal. Whatever Draghi says about banking reform will be politically based and not based on research by experts. The starting point always has to be 'more EU' whereas it is unlikely in the real world that all answers would come out to be simply as case of more EU solving the problem. That is illogical. Draghi : "If we are successful in establishing (a federal Europe) as I am sure we will be..." "Europe is much more stable today (thanks to me)..." There you have it. Breathtaking arrogance combined with delusion. The only option we have is to gtf away from pr!cks like this.

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Data from Barclaycard says sales in the run-up to Christmas have risen just 0.7pc compared to last year.
Although there was an overall rise, there were falls in food and drink sales, clothing, and department stores. Sales slowed through the month as customers appeared to wait as late as possible for deals. The data paints a concerning picture for the high street, with online sales rising 11.1pc compared to last year, significantly ahead of overall sales growth. Online sales now account for more than a fifth of spending in the UK for the first time.
Barclaycard has compiled comprehensive spending data for the first time this Christmas using transactions from its 11m customers in the UK. It covers the period from November 1 to December 14, showing a spike in online sales in late November and early December as consumers snapped up products. There then followed a lull in spending. On December 14, sales were down 2.8pc compared to the same time last year....Widespread price promotions are being offered to last-minute Christmas shoppers by retailers hoping to ring up record sales this weekend. Three-quarters of shops have sales or advertising promotions in their windows, but discounts are not as big as in 2011, according to PricewaterhouseCoopers. Shoppers are being offered discounts averaging 44%, compared with 48% this time last year. Visa expects to process 31.9m transactions on Saturday , or £15,000 every second, as consumers take advantage of late-night and early-morning shopping to purchase presents. Retailers including John Lewis and HMV will keep some branches open until 10pm on what is expected to be the busiest shopping day of the year.
"Despite a cautious start to consumer spending in the build-up to Christmas, we are now expecting the high street to see its busiest day of the year on Saturday as shoppers hunt for last-minute gifts for family and friends," said Steve Perry, commercial director at Visa Europe.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

WSJ - about the election day ...

WSJ - We begin with the three words everyone writing about the election must say: Nobody knows anything. Everyone’s guessing. I spent Sunday morning in Washington with journalists and political hands, one of whom said she feels it’s Obama, the rest of whom said they don’t know. I think it’s Romney. I think he’s stealing in “like a thief with good tools,” in Walker Percy’s old words. While everyone is looking at the polls and the storm, Romney’s slipping into the presidency. He’s quietly rising, and he’s been rising for a while.
Obama and the storm, it was like a wave that lifted him and then moved on, leaving him where he’d been. Parts of Jersey and New York are a cold Katrina. The exact dimensions of the disaster will become clearer when the election is over. One word: infrastructure. Officials knew the storm was coming and everyone knew it would be bad, but the people of the tristate area were not aware, until now, just how vulnerable to deep damage their physical system was. The people in charge of that system are the politicians. Mayor Bloomberg wanted to have the Marathon, to show New York’s spirit. In Staten Island last week they were bitterly calling it “the race through the ruins.” There is a disconnect.
But to the election. Who knows what to make of the weighting of the polls and the assumptions as to who will vote? Who knows the depth and breadth of each party’s turnout efforts? Among the wisest words spoken this cycle were by John Dickerson of CBS News and Slate, who said, in a conversation the night before the last presidential debate, that he thought maybe the American people were quietly cooking something up, something we don’t know about.
I think they are and I think it’s this: a Romney win.
Romney’s crowds are building—28,000 in Morrisville, Pa., last night; 30,000 in West Chester, Ohio, Friday It isn’t only a triumph of advance planning: People came, they got through security and waited for hours in the cold. His rallies look like rallies now, not enactments. In some new way he’s caught his stride. He looks happy and grateful. His closing speech has been positive, future-looking, sweetly patriotic. His closing ads are sharp—the one about what’s going on at the rallies is moving.
All the vibrations are right. A person who is helping him who is not a longtime Romneyite told me, yesterday: “I joined because I was anti Obama—I’m a patriot, I’ll join up But now I am pro-Romney.” Why? “I’ve spent time with him and I care about him and admire him. He’s a genuinely good man.” Looking at the crowds on TV, hearing them chant “Three more days” and “Two more days”—it feels like a lot of Republicans have gone from anti-Obama to pro-Romney.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

European leaders early Friday agreed to have a new supervisor for euro-zone banks up and running next year, a step that will pave the way for the bloc's bailout fund to pump capital directly into banks throughout the single-currency area......
Friday's announcement is a disappointment for some officials at the European Commission, the EU's executive arm, who had hoped to have the supervisor operational at the start of 2013.
The leaders also discussed plans for a common budget for the 17 euro-zone nations that could be used to absorb economic shocks impacting one part of the euro zone but not others. But José Manuel Barroso, the commission president, said: "This is something for the medium and longer term.

The man who died in Greece :

The death came as protesters lobbed flares, petrol bombs and chunks of marble at lines of riot police, who responded with tear gas and stun grenades, in confrontations which have become all too familiar in the Greek capital over the last three years.
The clashes erupted in and around Syntagma Square, in front of parliament, during protests against a new wave of austerity cuts that the government plans to introduce in November.
"A 65-year-old man was taken to hospital where efforts to revive him failed," a health ministry official told the AFP news agency.
One report said the man had been found dead in Syntagma Square while another said he was found on a bench several hundred yards from the violence.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

The Chineese?..Just wait till they ask for their money back...

This is what happens when there is structural imbalance for far too many economies. Unfortunately there are no good economists and consequently nobody knows how to get the world's economies back into equilibrium. One thing is for sure though, those with more than their fair share of manufacturing production and employment, like Germany and China, will need to come to terms with supporting the other economies. Only then will a softer landing be able to be negotiated for everyone.... "Unfortunately there are no good economists and consequently nobody knows how to get the world's economies back into equilibrium" But the West has gobbled all the Nobel Prizes in Economic year after year. They can land a hand, can't they? Btw, Paul Klugman is giving advice free on New York Times daily. Me as an 'economist' without proper training suggest to the westerners, to start, spending less and save more. The equilibrium will come, someday and somehow....Well...It would be interesting to see what the USA would do if the Chinese decided to buy massive amounts of Gold on comex options and decide they want physical delivery at the end of the contract period rather than the profit/loss in yet more dollars. The Fed would not be happy at all that the physical gold gets shipped off to China....They have in the past made it illegal to own physical gold. I say :...Well...China's growth bubble is slowing down very quickly.  They naturally want to protect their own industries and investments and are wary of risk now. They have bought over 2 trillion of European and US debt to prop up those economies and to encourage world trade supporting Chinese exports worldwide for years. Now the party may be over....or is it ???..Just wait till they ask for their money back...

Saturday, August 4, 2012

I bet even the IMF has no idea how much the game is going to change.

President Mario Draghi admitted his eurozone rescue plan was a work in progress. ... First there was light at the end of the tunnel - now there is just work in progress meaning that they are thinking of trying to locate where they are in the tunnel but they haven't got a clue what to do. Euro is just a shamble the biggest political failure of all times, the biggest wealth destroyer the humanity has ever known. Congratulations to the europhiles for making the world a poorer place. You're in a big hole and you're still digging.... There is a need for the europhiles for an apology for all the misery they piled onto the people and start urgent negotiations on how to get rid of the euro. We will forget all your sins. It is up to you to put your hands up and say sorry. wELL :The elephant in the room is losing it's grip on the ceiling light flex? Stand by for the mass stampede through doors and windows and walls. The IMF is as informed as manuel as to the whole picture, the truth is nobody can know the extent of the desolation bankers and financial whizzkids have visited upon us and anyone who can be convinced otherwise has little appreciation of the shortcomings of human nature. It's likely that from top to bottom they were all behaving with the mindset of the shoplifters during the riots, driven mad in their bonus rush, many also under the influence of cocaine?
Over four years some of the known truth has been drip fed out, it's rumsfeldt's unknown unknowns (as it were) that will lock in the longest depression yet, as we especially seem stuck with the present establishment using the austerity argument totally dishonestly for dogmatic gains and repression.... I SAY :
The economic shock from the eurozone crisis has not yet hit said the IMF- AND That's because it ISN'T a "eurozone crisis", it's a crisis of western consumer 'growth' capitalism, mainly caused by a bubble stoked by profligate bank lending activities, reckless and stupid corporate borrowing and a disastrous corporate 'globalisation' process which saw the biggest transfer of wealth across the globe in human history - oh, and diminishing conventional oil reserves.
Top bankers messed up, top business leaders gave away the wealth of the west for short term profit and dumb politicians didn't understand what was going on. Those that did, were easily 'persuaded'.  They're all sliding down the mountain side, using ice picks for brakes but kicking the Eurozone ahead of themselves, so that they have someone to called for a "policy game changer"
I bet even the IMF has no idea how much the game is going to change.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

The proposed creation of a single euro-zone bank supervisor is shaping up to be a test of the willingness of countries to give up national powers for the sake of the euro. Though still in its infancy, the effort—which envisions a key role for the European Central Bank in supervising the bloc's largest and most internationally active banks—faces hurdles as officials try to streamline a patchwork of regulators and supervisors numbering in the dozens. German central bank officials are reluctant to add another responsibility to the ECB that might weaken its anti-inflation vigilance. French bank executives worry that a Europe-wide supervisor wouldn't take into account the unique ownership structure of some banks. Behind a painted fence, the new European Central Bank building rises in Frankfurt. A banking supervision plan sees a key role for the ECB. "It will be a test case, so they'd better pass the test, otherwise it would put euro area in danger," says Daniel Gros, head of the Center for European Policy Studies, a think tank in Brussels. German Chancellor Angela Merkel has made the creation of a new euro-zone banking supervisor under the aegis of the ECB a precondition for agreeing to let Europe's bailout fund re capitalize banks directly, rather than indirectly via loans to national governments. Such a European financial backstop for banks would alleviate pressure on countries with banking crises, such as Spain and Ireland, and would correct one of the omissions in the design of the euro that economists say has made the currency union unstable. Creating a single supervisor would require countries to give up some of their sovereignty over how their banks are regulated.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Bank secrecy masks a world of crime and destructionBanks seem willing to exploit the loopholes found in tax havens and it's costing the British taxpayer dear" (source: the guardian)…If anybody has actually read any of my postings and comments, which is not at all certain since I do not read other blogs, posts and comments, they will have seen how I have been advocating the end of Tax Havens and fancy avoidance schemes for years. I have been saying we are in a world war: the 1% against the 99%. It was in my report sent to Governments in 2009: A MORAL PATH TO RECOVERY, which can still be read on my blog's archived posts,  I maintain that Wealth Management, offered by the big banks, is code word for tax evasion on a massive scale. It has grown into a major industry of the rich for the rich, by the rich actually sponsored by Governments which have allowed the privileged elite to avoid paying taxes. And we wonder why our countries are in debt and the economies stagnating. The banks have been exposed as virtually corrupt, fraudulent, criminal organizations and yet not one single banker has been brought to justice. The 13 trillion dollars hidden away as calculated by the Tax Justice Network simply must be recovered if Europe and America are to survive as democracies. The 99% just cannot support any more austerity measures, cut backs and increased taxes. That is the simple choice we face. The 1% know they cannot hold out for ever but they seem too shortsighted to understand that if the majority sinks they will go down too....Well, as long as we allow banks to hold a license to create money as debt, there will be no solution to this or any of the other corrupt activities of banks. Take away their power to do something and they will buy it back with the stroke of a pen. Banks are masters of our universe - but ONLY because we allow them to create 97% of our money supply when they extend loans. Until we restore the utility of money to a public accountable body in the national interest the bankers (in collusion with the political power they can buy so easily) will do as they please.

Saturday, July 21, 2012

The East provides a mirror

Since Brussels is quite happy to ignore referendum results it doesn't like, it's hardly n a good position to lecture others about democracy.
People in Eastern Europe have a healthy attachement to actual results. That's why they get impatient with the endless process-driven talk and de facto status quo and paralysis in most of the West (perfectly represented by EU institutions themselves). So it is more likely to get radical ideas and non-standard politicians in the East than in the West. East embraced nationalism, clericalism, fascism, socialism, communism, capitalism, whatever came along as long as the perception by people was that things might get better.
People in the east go for the jugular, game the systems, and in general act in self-serving ways. This can be annoying, but is is also more honest and authentic. Capitalism in the east very quickly disintagrated into plutocracy, abuse of labor rights, tunneling of companies, and a general kleptocracy - things that took a lot longer in the West, although it is clearly happening in the West right now.
People in the West need to understand that abstract "systems" that don't deliver results are just that: empty verbiage surrounding well-hidden and self-serving power. The East provides a mirror: there can be no truly free media that is owned by private interests, there can be no general prosperity in dog-eats-dog capitalism, there is no such thing as "meritocracy" any more in the West than there is one in the East, and maybe there is no such thing as "liberal democracy", only better and worse ways to run a society.
The ugly truth is that without self-restraint by the powerful, without growing wealth, and without external unifying threats, all these pathologies from th East are appearing the West. The political threat of communism made the prosperity and balanced societies the West possible (maybe inevitable). That's gone, how are we going to do the right thing without this external threat?

Friday, May 11, 2012

I say....

I've been scriblling about the super amounts of money that European taxpayers have been paying out every year in interest payments to the banking sector - €5.6 trillion since 1995. This has to be one of the longest running extortion rackets in history. Remember that the banks lend money to governments that they don't actually have - they use the magic conjuring trick of fractional reserve banking to create the "money" out of thin air. They then charge taxpayers interest despite the fact that lending to governments must surely be one of the safest bets around....The figures for long-term interest rates in the European Union can all be found on the ECB's website. If you click here, you can see the figures for the last year or so. But I've just discovered that you can easily generate graphs showing the interest rates for all EU countries since as long ago as 1993. First, here is the official ECB graph showing interest rate variations for the 17 Eurozone countries.
Intringuingly, there was a moment back in 2007-2008 when all the countries were paying the same rate of roughly 4% - it was a good time to be in the Eurozone. But since then, the rates have gone all over the place with Greece, Portutal and Ireland being forced to pay extortionate rates - so high that they might as well pay using a credit card. Some countries, such as Germany have done very well since their rates are now down below 2%. This gives them a fantastic competitive advantage. Could that explain why they are so keen on maintaining the status quo?

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Poor manufacturing data from Italy, Spain, France and Germany erodes early gains on European markets, while eurozone unemployment hits a record high of 10.9pc.....Unemployment in the eurozone reached a record high again in March as spending cuts continued to hit the working population. For all 17 nations in the eurozone, the jobless rate rose again to 10.9%, the highest since the euro was formed in 1999, Eurostat said. For the eurozone, 17.4 million are now looking for work and more than 3 million of those are under 25. Italy's unemployment rate reached a 12-year high, up to 9.8%. And in a surprise move, the jobless rate in Germany rose to 6.8% in March, official figures showed, having been expected to stay at the previous month's 6.7% after six months of declines. The number of Germans out of work is now at 2.87 million.For the whole of the European Union, including countries such as the UK and Denmark, the jobless rate is 10.2%.
Austerity or growth ... Last week, Spain said that the number of job seekers rose for the eighth month in a row in March to hit 5.6 million, a record rate of 24.4%. Spain has the highest unemployment rate in the European Union and it is expected to rise further this year. Spain and Italy are both in recession and have seen borrowing costs rise, raising the prospect that they may need help or even bailouts. A debate is raging in Europe about whether politicians have prioritized austerity at the expense of economic growth, making recovery even harder for themselves.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Britain will grow by 0.8pc this year, the IMF said in its World Economic Outlook, drawing its prediction into line with the Treasury’s Office for Budget Responsibility. The Bretton Woods institution’s forecast for the UK is now better than in January, when it was slashed to 0.6pc, but worse than September’s estimate of 1.6pc. Its 2013 forecast was unchanged at 2pc. The UK’s improved prospects reflected a sunnier outlook for the global economy as a whole. The IMF said there had been a “reacceleration of activity” and that “high frequency indicators point to stronger growth”. It added: “Growth in the UK, where the financial sector was hit hard by the global crisis, will be weak in early 2012, before recovering.” I wonder what the report would have been if Osbourne had said NO to the IMF? They've had another £10 billion, I'd like to know where the money's coming from? Yet, in today's Times, there is an article on Food Banks, where the unemployed and some working people, who are lacking basic things have free food. In this nation, where we keep lending to others, give £29 billion per year in foreign aid, yet we have our own who don't have enough money to feed themselves. Its a national disgrace. And if anyone accepts it then they too are a disgrace. We will see things get much worse when the new benefits set in and the rest of the cuts take place. We may even see soup kitchens appear on our streets. Who can we blame? Well I don't blame the unemployed who may have worked until this crisis, I don't blame the sick and the disabled who have been targeted by this government. I don't even blame the rich who have had tax cuts, if they are offered anyone would take them, that's human nature. However, I do blame this government and past ones who have brought this country down to this level through their policies and actions. The political elite, who have no idea what they have done to people in this country and don't even care in many cases. So, what can we now do while we are in this mess?I wonder what the report would have been if Osbourne had said NO to the IMF? They've had another £10 billion, I'd like to know where the money's coming from? Yet, in today's Times, there is an article on Food Banks, where the unemployed and some working people, who are lacking basic things have free food. In this nation, where we keep lending to others, give £29 billion per year in foreign aid, yet we have our own who don't have enough money to feed themselves. Its a national disgrace.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

British banks need to be prepared for a disorderly break-up of the eurozone, says Andrew Bailey, the FSA's director of banks and building societies.He said that while the debt crisis in the 17-nation currency zone had not singled out the UK banks, "We must not ignore the prospect of the disorderly departure of some countries from the eurozone." Mr Bailey, who will be deputy head of the new Prudential Regulation Authority, told the Future of Retail Banking Conference in London that the regulator was keen to see banks plan for severe disruptions if the eurozone debt crisis intensifies. Looking ahead, he said weight of new banking regulations will prompt a re-think of the role of investment banking in banks. "My best guess is that we will see a sharp reduction in the scale of investment-banking activity undertaken in the banking sector," he said . He stressed the need for banks to build up longer-term funding to be used as a buffer "in times like the present". However, he cautioned against rushing through reforms: "Many banks still have excessive leverage, and there is a need for a clear path to reduce leverage, but to a timetable that does not damage the wider economy." He welcomed moves by banks to sell non-core assets as it sent an important signal to investors, regulators and the public that lenders were committed to structural changes. (sirce ; UK press)

Sunday, November 20, 2011

"I say - The chapter on Euro should be closed asap."

During the last two weeks fears about the future of the eurozone have intensified as government borrowing costs for Italy and Spain, two of the region's highly indebted nations, have spiralled to unsustainable levels. Borrowing costs among stronger countries including France have also risen. However. in the past two weeks there has been a 93% increase in the number of transactions where people transferred money out of euro bank accounts into UK sterling accounts. The figure, from foreign exchange company World First, represents an increase to almost 300 transactions in the past fortnight compared with 154 over the same two-week period last year. Most of World First's customers are based in Italy, Spain and France, and the typical minimum transaction value is at least €1,000 (£856). "It is clear that most people have had enough of hoping for the best with the situation in the euro zone and have decided to take some decisive action," said Jeremy Cook, chief economist at World First. "Now the crisis seems to be infecting the European core, as opposed to just the periphery, people are worried that a real collapse could be just around the corner," Mr. Cook added. I - the owner of this blog, - agree an would be more than happy if Europe closes the chapter on Euro !

Friday, November 18, 2011

Euro -Zone, hot air, indecizion and in conclision, NO DEAL -- Germany and the U.K. remained at odds about the introduction of a levy on financial transactions at European level, but agreed on a limit for the rise in the budget of the European Union, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and U.K. Prime Minister David Cameron said after meeting Friday. German Chancellor Angela Merkel and British Prime Minister David Cameron spoke to the media after thetalks at the Chancellery on Friday. "We are one in saying that a global financial transaction tax would be introduced by both countries immediately," Ms. Merkel said, but acknowledged that no progress was made on a possible introduction of such a levy by Europe alone. Germany wants the EU to pioneer the set-up of the tax, while the U.K. is resisting that, fearing the position of London as a financial center could be harmed. The two leaders showed more agreement on the issue of the EU's budget. "It's not acceptable that the [EU] budget grows by 5%," Mr. Cameron said, rejecting a proposal by the European Parliament. Efforts to consolidate national budgets should be mirrored in the EU budget, Ms. Merkel said, proposing the budget increase to stay close to the inflation rate. After recent disagreements between the 17 countries belonging to the euro zone and the 10 EU countries outside of it on a possible change to the EU treaty, Ms. Merkel also suggested as a compromise that a treaty change should only be adopted by the euro-zone countries. Mr. Cameron and his finance minister, George Osborne, have openly backed the need for greater euro-zone integration, even if it requires a treaty change.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Angela Merkel will not "allow" UK "to get away" with refusal to back financial transactions tax

The German government believes Britain should be part of a Europe-wide tax on financial transactions, the proceeds of which could help prop up the single currency. However, David Cameron and George Osborne have blocked the tax, with the Chancellor claiming it is a “bullet aimed at the heart of London”. Ministers have instead called on the Germans to allow the European Central Bank (ECB) effectively to print money to rescue beleaguered economies. The Prime Minister will travel to Berlin on Friday for what are expected to be tense negotiations with Angela Merkel, the German chancellor, over the crisis. A senior figure in the party headed by Mrs Merkel attacked Britain as relations between the two countries deteriorated in the wake of the single currency crisis. Tensions between Germany and Britain over how to handle the crisis in the eurozone deepened after allies of the German chancellor, Angela Merkel, claimed she would not allow the UK to "get away" with its refusal to back a European financial transactions tax. Speaking before a meeting between Merkel and David Cameron on Friday, the parliamentary leader of her Christian Democratic Union said: "Britain had a responsibility to make Europe a success." Volker Kauder, at the CDU conference in Leipzig, said: "I can understand that the British don't want that [a transactions tax] when they generate almost 30% of their gross domestic product from financial-market business in the City of London. Only going after their own benefit and refusing to contribute is not the message we're letting the British get away with."

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Over the last few weeks we have had a series of anonymous "EU officials" making statements to the press that have gone on the wires about 1 hour before the New York markets close. On each occasion the effect has been to ramp the markets as brainless headline-scanning algorithms and brainless headline-scanning traders rush out to buy, buy buy. And on each occasion it has subsequently become clear that these "EU officials" were talking garbage. You financial journalist chaps need to ask yourselves one question before printing this sort of un attributed rumor: Why exactly are you being given a story that if published at 7.30pm EST will cause the New York markets to go from -100 on the day to +200 in a matter of minutes? What is the agenda? Whoever is doing this will know that you can't keep ramping the markets on late-afternoon rumours. Giving the markets its daily rush will require evolving techniques of spin and innuendo. Any market that moves so sharply on an un attributed comment is clearly hopelessly, disastrously dysfunctional.

EFSF could be leveraged to any level I suppose 2trn, 3 - 100trn etc. It would be more debt, probably owed by - us and our children. It would be surprising if France and Germany agreed a deal, though. But they will have to appear to make up something. They want to see what happens in Greece first. They play it by ear and stall for time. There is no real plan apart from that. Leaking stories of decisive action is a part of the plan, but if you think about it the kind of things they can do are not going to work in the end anyway, and they must know it. It has become farcical. If you read the Greek press it gives a more realistic picture, by necessity. " The European Commission has raided several banks, on suspicion that they may have been operating a cartel in relation to complex derivatives". Well its a start if they need any further information on who to target next I'm sure Max Keiser would be more than happy to help them out. At least there's one person we can turn to for getting the true facts about what is happening. And if you're interested in speaking out about something closer to home which is just as important in its own way, make a comment.

Friday, October 7, 2011

London, 07 October 2011 -- Moody's Investors Service has today downgraded the senior debt and deposit ratings of 12 UK financial institutions and confirmed the ratings of 1 institution. This concludes its review of systemic support assumptions from the UK government for these institutions initiated on 24 May 2011. The downgrades have been caused by Moody's reassessment of the support environment in the UK which has resulted in the removal of systemic support for 7 smaller institutions and the reduction of systemic support by one to three notches for 5 larger, more systemically important financial institutions. According to Moody's, announcements made, as well as actions already taken by UK authorities have significantly reduced the predictability of support over the medium to long-term. Moody's believes that the government is likely to continue to provide some level of support to systemically important financial institutions, which continue to incorporate up to three notches of uplift. However, it is more likely now to allow smaller institutions to fail if they become financially troubled. The downgrades do not reflect a deterioration in the financial strength of the banking system or that of the government.The rating actions include a one-notch downgrade of Lloyds TSB Bank plc (to A1 from Aa3), Santander UK plc (to A1 from Aa3), Co-Operative Bank plc (to A3 from A2), a two-notch downgrade of RBS plc (to A2 from Aa3) and Nationwide Building Society (to A2 from Aa3); and downgrades of one to five notches of 7 smaller building societies. The ratings of Clydesdale Bank were confirmed at A2 (negative outlook).

As outlined in the May press release, we have reviewed the standalone ratings of all entities prior to concluding on the debt ratings. A separate announcement today covers the upgrade of the standalone rating of Co-Operative Bank to C- (mapping to Baa1 on the long-term debt scale) from D+ and earlier announcements cover the upgrades of the standalone ratings of Santander UK, Nationwide, Yorkshire, and Principality Building Societies. A detailed summary of the rating actions and the current levels of systemic support for UK financial institutions is available here
Separate announcements will follow on entities included in the May 24th review, but not concluded in this action: this includes certain subsidiaries of RBS and Lloyds, as well as Bank of Ireland (UK).

Monday, September 19, 2011

Mark Pritchard, the secretary of the 1922 committee of Conservative MPs, is the most senior Tory yet to demand a vote on Britain’s membership of the European Union following the eurozone crisis. Writing in The Daily Telegraph, Mr Pritchard says that the EU has become an “occupying force” which is eroding British sovereignty and that the “unquestioning support” of backbenchers is no longer guaranteed. He says the Government should hold a referendum next year on whether Britain should have a “trade only” relationship with the EU, rather than the political union which has evolved “by stealth”. He warns that the Conservatives will see constituents “kick back” if taxpayers are forced to foot the bill for the failure of “unreformed and lazy” eurozone countries to introduce fully-fledged austerity measures. Mr Pritchard is a leading figure in a group of 120 Conservative MPs who are pushing the Prime Minister to set out a “clear plan” for pulling back from Europe.