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Had An Intersting Chat With A Banker Today.

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So, was seeing a patient today, recently retired, got chatting and turns out he used be quite high up at one of the high st banks. Rather than launching into my perclivities on bankers I replied with a euphemistic 'interesting times in the banking sector'. Turns out he was glad to be out and was horrified with a lot of the banking practices that went on, he reckoned none of the people really knew what was going on and saw no downside to lending people money that they probably couldn't pay back. He told me about some ridiculous self certs and how the people whos job it was to oversee all this are still raking in big bucks in bonuses etc which he said 'irks some people'. We had a chat about the inflation figures and interest rates etc He was a really sound down to earth bloke, the kind who would never end up too high up in any company due to the fact he probably isn't a self serving narcisist.

Strangely the fact that we both had the same opinions on the short comings of the banking sector and shared an interest in the fallout from it, generated a feeling of camaraderie and we were chatting like old friends. Anyone else had a similar experience of bonding with a relative stranger who 'gets it'?

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So, was seeing a patient today, recently retired, got chatting and turns out he used be quite high up at one of the high st banks. Rather than launching into my perclivities on bankers I replied with a euphemistic 'interesting times in the banking sector'. Turns out he was glad to be out and was horrified with a lot of the banking practices that went on, he reckoned none of the people really knew what was going on and saw no downside to lending people money that they probably couldn't pay back. He told me about some ridiculous self certs and how the people whos job it was to oversee all this are still raking in big bucks in bonuses etc which he said 'irks some people'. We had a chat about the inflation figures and interest rates etc He was a really sound down to earth bloke, the kind who would never end up too high up in any company due to the fact he probably isn't a self serving narcisist.

Strangely the fact that we both had the same opinions on the short comings of the banking sector and shared an interest in the fallout from it, generated a feeling of camaraderie and we were chatting like old friends. Anyone else had a similar experience of bonding with a relative stranger who 'gets it'?

Hmmm...

So he's spent the last 30 years in banking. But now he disagrees with the way banks were run during those 30 years?

Few recently retired bankers would admit that they were enthusiastic and well bonused participants in this monstruous f*ckup.

Edited by _w_

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So, was seeing a patient today, recently retired, got chatting and turns out he used be quite high up at one of the high st banks. Rather than launching into my perclivities on bankers I replied with a euphemistic 'interesting times in the banking sector'. Turns out he was glad to be out and was horrified with a lot of the banking practices that went on, he reckoned none of the people really knew what was going on and saw no downside to lending people money that they probably couldn't pay back. He told me about some ridiculous self certs and how the people whos job it was to oversee all this are still raking in big bucks in bonuses etc which he said 'irks some people'. We had a chat about the inflation figures and interest rates etc He was a really sound down to earth bloke, the kind who would never end up too high up in any company due to the fact he probably isn't a self serving narcisist.

Strangely the fact that we both had the same opinions on the short comings of the banking sector and shared an interest in the fallout from it, generated a feeling of camaraderie and we were chatting like old friends. Anyone else had a similar experience of bonding with a relative stranger who 'gets it'?

Yup.

My landlady. (Ex landlady on Sunday).

Hmmm...

So he's spent the last 30 years in banking. But now he disagrees with the way banks were run during those 30 years?

Few recently retired bankers would admit that they were enthusiastic and well bonused participants in this monstruous f*ckup.

Did the OP say 30 years?

Sound to me like he was an old gent "recently retired". So he might have started as a clerk in 1960 and spent 50 years in the game.

Anyway, back in 2004 I was an EA. I got out in 2005.

Does that mean I only disagreed with industry practices after I left?

Not at all.

I left because my increasing dismay at increasingly suicidal business practice reached a tipping point.

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Hmmm...

So he's spent the last 30 years in banking. But now he disagrees with the way banks were run during those 30 years?

Few recently retired bankers would admit that they were enthusiastic and well bonused participants in this monstruous f*ckup.

Well to be fair if he is retired he might have been an old school 3.5 times income.

The current bonus fuelled lending monster who run the show are mostly in their 40s and 50s right now.

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Hmmm...

So he's spent the last 30 years in banking. But now he disagrees with the way banks were run during those 30 years?

Few recently retired bankers would admit that they were enthusiastic and well bonused participants in this monstruous f*ckup.

With all due respect - how do you know that this banker was a "enthusiastic participant".

Maybe, you know, despite being, like, a banker :o , he was being honest when he said he was "horrified with a lot of the banking practices that went on".

Some of them are human.

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Well to be fair if he is retired he might have been an old school 3.5 times income.

The current bonus fuelled lending monster who run the show are mostly in their 40s and 50s right now.

this is an interesting point, and true

Fred Harrison associated the boom bust cycle with 7 year periods of management structures in lending institutions - ie the current lot of boom-tastic lending middle-management got their positions about the year 2000 off the back of a rising property market and then went mental

This fits as I worked aty one during this time and saw the new management come in in this way around then, they were crazies.

Further examples include Applegarth at Northern Rock, got the job 2001. Fred Goodwin RBS 2001. Hornby and Crosby HBOS 1999. B&B demutualisation in 2000.

Edited by Si1

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Did the OP say 30 years?

Sound to me like he was an old gent "recently retired". So he might have started as a clerk in 1960 and spent 50 years in the game.

Anyway, back in 2004 I was an EA. I got out in 2005.

Does that mean I only disagreed with industry practices after I left?

Not at all.

I left because my increasing dismay at increasingly suicidal business practice reached a tipping point.

If he's just retired isn't it fair to assume he has spent the _last_ 30 years in banking?

The wholesale cultural shift in banking started in the 80s (~30 years ago), 'greed is good', etc. Back then anyone with an ounce of integrity would have felt increasingly uncomfortable and unable to work there. Until all there was left was a bunch of beastly psycopaths and their well paid compliant support staff.

<Edit to add: to get the years right, Fred Goodwin's generation are those retiring now.>

Edited by _w_

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With all due respect - how do you know that this banker was a "enthusiastic participant".

Those with integrity complained about the feral behaviour displayed by their bosses at banks. They didn't last very long at all.

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Further examples include Applegarth at Northern Rock, got the job 2001. Fred Goodwin RBS 2001. Hornby and Crosby HBOS 1999. B&B demutualisation in 2000.

The only way Fred Goodwin could climb up the corporate ranks was if the banks offered an environment that fostered his kind of character throughout his career, from the beginning. So for the whole 30-40 years.

Edited by _w_

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The only way Fred Goodwin could climb up the corporate ranks was if the banks offered an environment that fostered his kind of character. So for the whole 30-40 years.

you are over-specifying, things have gradually become looser over time, which gave him his chance

hurts me to say it but it goes back gradually to early 80s reforms. there i said it.

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I agree.

it's just this flipping bailout

moral hazard is something you can almost touch now

the cost to the economy of frankly flabby and unporfessional big financial companies is going to be enormous

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Banking has been for many years a matter of give me the top job and when I have got enough you will be next in line to get the cream. ;) A closed shop which made the Unions in the 60s and 70s honest and fair looking after and protecting their members. :rolleyes:

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The only way Fred Goodwin could climb up the corporate ranks was if the banks offered an environment that fostered his kind of character throughout his career, from the beginning. So for the whole 30-40 years.

Different cricles and groups in any big organisation, not uncommon to find the back stabbers and management "achievers" almost universally loathed by the majority of staff who neither care for their new management culture, style or business practices. Having said that plenty in these organisations drank from the well quite happily for many years.

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Different cricles and groups in any big organisation, not uncommon to find the back stabbers and management "achievers" almost universally loathed by the majority of staff who neither care for their new management culture, style or business practices.

well put

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If he's just retired isn't it fair to assume he has spent the _last_ 30 years in banking?

Or more...

The wholesale cultural shift in banking started in the 80s (3 years ago) , 'greed is good', etc

IMWO, only the period 2001 on was full on corrupted. Don't know why that should be...

I agree the (first stage) of the shift started mid eighties, but it was slowed if not reversed 89 - 97.

Again, I can't think of any Major* reason why this happened.

Back then anyone with an ounce of integrity would have felt increasingly uncomfortable and unable to work there. Until all there was left was a bunch of beastly psycopaths and their well paid compliant support staff.

Maybe he felt that working there wth integrity, old fashioned risk assesment and not being a beastly psycopath was a responsability?

In the last few years, maybe he just clung on for the pension.

Who knows?

*according to your logic, John Major should have resigned the moment he was appointed to the Treasury.

Instead, he did what little he could to fix things.

Looking back, that little he did seems: If not much, at least not bad.

(The ERM debacle, and his oversight of our entry, will however and forever taint his record).

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Those with integrity complained about the feral behaviour displayed by their bosses at banks. They didn't last very long at all.

I doubt it. Most "real" people have mortgages to service, bills to pay.

They don't "complain", they leave quietly, with a reference, and let the boat sink.

The alternative is to explain to the wife and kids that they are now living in a bedsit in Stabsville, but that's ok, because daddy has "integrity", even if he is now blacklisted.

A few men do it. Very few.

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Again, I can't think of any Major* reason why this happened.

I can, once they started playing the game after 2001 they knew that it was all a fascade and decided to ream as much in a short a period of time as possible from the system.

Imagine their joy at being given a second chance.

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I doubt it. Most "real" people have mortgages to service, bills to pay.

They don't "complain", they leave quietly, with a reference, and let the boat sink.

The alternative is to explain to the wife and kids that they are now living in a bedsit in Stabsville, but that's ok, because daddy has "integrity", even if he is now blacklisted.

A few men do it. Very few.

I had an interesting "exit" interview.

Nearly took another job at another company, they went ballistic when I turned it down, self employed ever since, if I have to take shit it is on my terms and duration is largely in my control.

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I am not exactly a banker but in a closely connected bit of the finance industry. I can think of loads of people who would be right at home on this site when it comes to their outlook on economics.

I presume those of you who are viscerally antibankers have just not actually met many.

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I can, once they started playing the game after 2001 they knew that it was all a fascade and decided to ream as much in a short a period of time as possible from the system.

Imagine their joy at being given a second chance.

I agree sadly and wholeheartedly with your post.

But the part of my post that you quoted was meant to point out that the reaming can be controlled:

Even by an average comptroller. (sic)

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I agree sadly and wholeheartedly with your post.

But the part of my post that you quoted was meant to point out that the reaming can be controlled:

Even by an average comptroller. (sic)

Probably because they are doing the reaming too.

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I had an interesting "exit" interview.

Nearly took another job at another company, they went ballistic when I turned it down, self employed ever since, if I have to take shit it is on my terms and duration is largely in my control.

Are you saying they sacked you for examining your external worth?

I am not exactly a banker but in a closely connected bit of the finance industry. I can think of loads of people who would be right at home on this site when it comes to their outlook on economics.

I presume those of you who are viscerally antibankers have just not actually met many.

I don't know any bankers, but I could substitute a lot of jobs into your post and agree with it.

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  • 331 Brexit, House prices and Summer 2020

    1. 1. Including the effects Brexit, where do you think average UK house prices will be relative to now in June 2020?


      • down 5% +
      • down 2.5%
      • Even
      • up 2.5%
      • up 5%



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