Thursday, 9 October 2008

Riskiest banks ask for taxpayer shareholdings

As is inevitable from the structure of the proposed bank package it is the riskiest banks that are now asking for taxpayers money. According to the Financial Times late last night: 'HSBC, Standard Chartered and Abbey, the UK arm of Santander of Spain, said they would not seek government capital. Royal Bank of Scotland, Barclays and Lloyds TSB, which is in the middle of a takeover of HBOS, are seen as more likely to use the scheme.'
HSBC and Standard Chartered, because they are in origin Asian based banks, benefitting from the strength of China and other Asian economies, and Santander, because it is a Spanish bank that has historically focussed on retail deposits, are precisely the strongest banks. Royal Bank of Scotland, Barclays and Lloyd's TSB are the weakest, and therefore riskiest, banks to invest in.
This confirms that under the proposed bank finance scheme the taxpayer is being asked to invest in the riskiest of banks.
This should be rejected.

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