Half the truth is sometimes little. But even if we take 86 percent of the truth, how much of it remains in our hands? That’s all: ugliness.
Should commercial banks be separated from investment banks?
All this is worth announcing because Hector Urban said a lot of truth in his parliamentary speech on Monday. Should commercial banks be separated from investment banks? Of course! Many progressive economists think so. This was already done in the United States in 1933, learning from the experience of the crisis.
It is Henry Clint’s name that he has broken this separation. Of course, Clint could explain it, as did the Monica Lewinsky case. Good old Clint argued that he had already abolished the law of separation to facilitate crisis management. Which is true, just the risk of a total collapse would have been less.
Take responsibility for the investments made by the banks
“Regulation is not a word of mouth,” the prime minister said. He is quite right about that, too. It is also true that the owners, the shareholders, have to take responsibility for the investments made by the banks. Indeed, that would be right, just because of the enormous systemic risks that states cannot afford.
And not because of the bankers but their citizens in general, because in an uncontrolled credit crisis, unfortunately, not only bankers, but virtually everyone else would be ruined.
Banks’ foreign currency loans were defective products
Which is certainly not appropriate: to give the impression that the things worn by the banks justify the irrational steps of Hungarian economic policy. Peter Lina, an economist who believes banks’ foreign currency loans were defective products, recently debated a forum with George Briyan, chairman of the GFI.
It’s easy to imagine how hard it was for Lina to swap the bankers. But in one respect he agreed with Surani: the government’s early repayment action was making the situation worse.
Banks must indeed be regulated, but they must not be deprived of their capital. Because no matter how much trouble with the banks, we need their loans.