Economic crisis
The Times, 4 December 2009

Merry Christmas, you bankers

Published on 4 December 2009 at 14:42
The Times, 4 December 2009


In the midst of the worst economic crisis for nearly a century, the good news is that bankers of the City won’t be going hungry this Christmas. The Times today leads with reassuring news that 200 executives of Lloyds bank are “set to receive one-off payments worth up to 80 per cent of their annual salaries” while the Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) is spreading festive cheer with a “£1.5 billion payout to executives, a 50 per cent rise on 2008.” These are the same banks that the British government has bailed out to a whopping tune of only 100 billion euros since the crisis broke last year. So far the British government’s total exposure in bailing out the UK’s moribund banking system, according to a report published 4 December by the National Audit Office, is “£846 billion, or £40,000 for each family in Britain”. In the case of the RBS, PM Gordon Brown and Lord Mandelson, Secretary of State for Business, had promised to veto any payouts, but with the board threatening to resign, they resolutely “stepped back from confrontation.”

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