Credit crisis diary: Time for Obama to up his game

We know Barack Obama is the saviour of the planet and all that, but his whirlwind of activity over the first seven days in office has disappointed in one respect: he hasn't saved the economy yet. Just check out
www.recovery.gov, the site the new administration has set up in order to update Americans on how their tax dollars are being spent in the battle against recession. The site has, as yet, no content at all.

Now that's what I call a banking scam

Bernie Madoff? Small beer. Think yourself lucky you're not a customer of Dynasty Banking, where a senior member of staff has done a runner with £86bn worth of customers' money. Fortunately, this has all taken place in the world of Eve Online, a virtual reality game similar to Second Life. Amusingly, however, Eve Online itself is run out of Iceland, where they know a thing or two about bust banks.

The waiting game goes on at Equitable Life

It took policyholders six years to get an apology out of the Government for the string of regulatory cock-ups that allowed the Equitable Life scandal to happen, but only six days for them to reject ministers' pleas for forgiveness. You can see why Equitable victims aren't entirely happy with the Government's response – they reckon 90 per cent of those who lost out won't get a penny in compensation. Sorry doesn't quite cover that.

In the market for a second-hand jet?

You'll be relieved to know fat cats are feeling the pain of this downturn too. Figures from Jet Republic show the percentage of all private jets up for sale is 12.7 per cent, up from 6 per cent last year. So if you've kept your job and want to upgrade your transport, why not cash in on an executive's misery.

An offer you'd bewise to ignore

Who says there's a shortage of credit right now? Winchester Loans is emailing the world offering people the opportunity to borrow up to £250,000, for the very reasonable interest rate of 42.5 per cent, assuming you have a property to secure the debt against. Thank goodness someone out there is prepared to do a bit of lending, albeit at a rate that is a tad over 28 times' higher than the Bank of England's base rate.

businessdiary@independent.co.uk

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