“All eyes will be on the unveiling of the final report from the Independent Commission on Banking (ICB) tomorrow but those who want fundamental reform of the banking system may well be disappointed.
Anything less than the complete separation of retail and investment banking will ensure that banks remain too big to fail. Taxpayers will remain vulnerable to a repeat performance of the last crash, leaving them liable for the subsequent large scale and unpredictable economic and social damage.
Ring fencing retail from investment banking will have the perverse effect of providing universal banks with cheap funding from the retail division with which to bet in the (unreformed) casino and subsidise already inflated bonuses.
From the beginning the remit of the ICB was too narrow and they have been unable to address issues fundamental to the creation of safe and useful banking such as nature of credit creation, to the provision of universally accessible utility banking services, tax reform. Moreover, the government have refused any investigation into why the crash happened.
Instead of fostering a wide-ranging and open debate around what a good banking system would look like, the process has evolved in to a technocratic conversation between city and regulatory elites. As such the process has been at best opaque and at worst loaded in favour of the banking lobby and not the people.
We fear that the process of building a good, equitable and stable system of banking will not begin with the ICB report tomorrow. If so it will be a huge and potentially tragic missed opportunity.”
Ha-Joon Chang, University of Cambridge
Neal Lawson, Co-chair, Good Banking Forum
Andrew Simms, nef fellow
Tony Geenham, Head of Banking, nef
Gavin Hayes, General Secretary, Compass
Caroline Lucas MP, Green Party Leader
Prof Victoria Chick, UCL
Prof Malcolm Sawyer, Leeds University Business School
Prof Geoffrey M Hodgson, University of Hertfordshire Business School
Prof Emeritus Alan Hallsworth, Staffordshire University
Hugo Radice, University of Leeds
Jonathan Perraton, University of Sheffield
Prof Christine Cooper University of Strathclyde
Ben Dyson, Positive Money
Richard Murphy, Tax Research LLP
Howard Reed, Director, Landman Economics
Ismail Erturk, Manchester Business School
Stuart White, University of Oxford
Chris Edwards, UEA
Prof Diane Elson, University of Essex
Paul Moore, Moore, Carter and Associates
James Meadway, Senior Economist, nef
Professor Mariana Mazzucato, Open University
Prof. Giuseppe Fontana, Leeds University Business School
Simon Hebditch, Social Liberal Forum
Baroness Lister of Burtersett
Dr Martin O’Neill, University of York
Tim Lines, Green House
Nick Isles, MD, Corporate Agenda
Rupert Read, Eastern Region Green Party Co-ordinator, Chair of Green
House thinktank, and Reader in Philosophy at the University of
Molly Scott Cato, Cardiff School of Management
Pat Conaty, nef fellow
David H Smith
Tony Curzon Price, Open Democracy