Tuesday, 3 March 2009

Blame 2 - this time it's personal

I promise to stop going on about this soon... Well, as soon as the press calm down about looking to attribute blame for the current economic circumstances (I refuse to call it a crisis) - which is not likely to be very soon.

This time it's Robert Peston (yes, him again) writing in his blog on the BBC's web site. Writing about HBOS's results (which are awful - but who is surprised) he says:
As I've said before, it is amazing that the Financial Services Authority, the
City watchdog, didn't feel it was appropriate to rein in HBOS's corporate
lending department.

Well - as I've said before, it is amazing that the shareholders didn't feel it was appropriate to rein in HBOS's lending department. Surely they are the first line of defence? Or how about the Board - or the Non Execs?

It would not have been easy. Try to imagine suggesting dumping and running from the Sub Prime market (and its associated off-shoots) in, say, January 2006. As a Chief Executive of any global banking setup you would first have been laughed at, and second would have been fired as your stock price didn't keep pace with your competition. It can't however, all be the fault of the FSA.

Mr. Peston is at it again - with another rant against Sir Fred Goodwin. I don't suggest that he's blameless, nor that he should avoid any form of personal permanent inconvenience for some of his decisions. What concerns me is the focus on one man - Mr. Brown and friends must be very happy. The more focus on Sir Fred, the less on them. Come on BBC - context please.

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