Business Diary: How best to fight the bankers' corner?
Thursday 13 May 2010
With David Cameron now installed in Downing Street and Vince Cable in charge, nominally at least, of the banks, all eyes are on Angela Knight, the chief executive of the British Bankers' Association. Knight, a former Conservative minister, has been a very effective lobbyist for the banks, but has also been tipped for a return to office. The question for the City is whether it's better to have her fighting its corner from inside or outside the Government.
King tones down his warning to the new PM
So, does Mervyn King, the Governor of the Bank of England, still think the winner of the election will be out of power for a generation due to the dire economic situation in Britain and the cuts the new Government will have to make? King couldn't quite bring himself to call David Hale, the economist who last month said this was what the Governor had told him, a liar, but he did embark yesterday on a spot of damage limitation, urging people to take reports of his comments with a "pinch of salt".
All of a sudden, no one wants to insure UK debt
Not much of a welcome from the derivatives market for the new Government. Britain has moved into first place in the market for credit default swaps, which offer insurance against the possibility of a default on gilt repayments. Number one, that is, in the sense that more people are selling out of CDSs insuring British debt than contracts for anywhere else in the world.
Cashing in on the election so very quickly
Top marks to independent financial adviser Hargreaves Lansdown, which was the first to get the inevitable mailshot out yesterday. "Act now for your free post-election investment plan," it implored people. Such a plan must have been put together with pretty scant information on how government policy is changing, but you can't fault their initiative.
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