Credit crisis diary: 24/01/2009

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The Independent Online

Don't shoot the messenger

Fair play to the British Bankers' Association for daring to air that hoary old chestnut about the credit crunch: that it's all the fault of the media. Lesley McLeod, the BBA's top spinmeister, is plastered all over the front of the latest edition of the trade magazine PR Week complaining that many journalists covering the crisis do not understand it. That's right – the problem isn't that banks have plunged the world into recession, but that journalists covering the story don't know what they're talking about.

The RBS chaps who are flying the flags

Royal Bank of Scotland hasn't won too many plaudits in recent times, but here's to David Simmonds and Ross Walker, its head of foreign exchange and UK economistrespectively. The pair have published an open letter rubbishing thearguments of Jim Rogers, who last week claimed Britain's economy was finished and that sterling had no future. Messrs Simmonds andWalker comprehensively demolish the assertions made by Rogers, whose claims they describe as"exaggerated" and "lacking rigour". Good on you, boys.



Postman Pat should get the sack

Naughty Entertainment Rights, fined £245,000 yesterday by the chief City regulator for failing to release market-sensitive information quickly enough. Doubly embarrassing for Postman Pat, the company's hottest property. Did he fail to deliver the requisite information to the Financial Services Authority on time? Presumably the data was earmarked for second post.



They only have themselves to blame

At first sight, it's not difficult to see why so many people are on the streets protesting in Iceland – the country is in economic meltdown having been at the epicentre of the credit crisis. But hang on for one minute – in fact, 70 per cent ofworking people in Iceland were involved, in some way, with financial services. It's a bit rich for them to be pelting the prime minister with eggs.



Thain has some catching up to do

John Thain may think he's a big shot, but the Merrill Lynch boss's $1,400 wastepaper bin is minor league compared with the excesses of Dennis Kozlowski, the disgraced (and now imprisoned) former boss of TycoInternational. He once spent $6,000 of Tyco's cash on a shower curtain. Respect.

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