Simon English: Bankers behaving badly look worse than MPs

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The Independent Online

Outlook Ping. A City analyst fires in an email on the behaviour of bankers in front of this week's Treasury Select Committee hearings: "Our elected politicians were asking sensible, direct questions and all they got in return was disingenuous guff.

"I went to a talk by the historian David Kynaston, and it seems to me that London has a long history as a financial capital precisely because we are not prepared to put up with this kind of thing."

I think that's right. If all this stuff about the vitalness of the City of London to Britain's welfare is true, it rests on old-fashioned notions of straightforwardness and probity; of a willingness to embrace sunlight and be held to account.

The behaviour of the bank chief executives in front of our elected officials has been lamentable. They arrive well rehearsed in the art of saying nothing. They look worse than MPs, which is saying something.