FSA boss Lord Turner criticises Libor traders
Bankers who attempted to rig the Libor rate were driven by “cynical greed”, the boss of the City watchdog said today.
Their acts had dealt "a huge blow" to the industry's reputation, the Financial Services Authority (FSA) chairman Lord Turner told its annual meeting.
He said such behaviour was "far too prevalent" before the financial crisis and called for the industry to be purged of "a culture of cynical entitlement".
The banking sector faced a "major challenge" in refocusing on its key functions such as raising capital for companies and helping customers manage risk, he added.
He said: "The cynical greed of traders asking their colleagues to falsify their Libor submissions so that they could make bigger profits has justifiably shocked and angered people, in particular when we are facing hard economic times provoked by the financial crisis.
"But sadly it is clear that the behaviours evidenced in the Libor case were not, in the years before the crisis, confined to this specific area of financial activity."
He also pointed to mis-selling scandals, such as payment protection insurance, as being symptomatic of a "crisis of trust and reputation" faced by significant parts of the UK's financial services industry.
He hit out at a "cynical willingness" of traders to sell securities "whose value they doubted to customers whose judgment they disparaged".
They had "eroded customer confidence that the industry is looking after its customers' rather than its own interests", he added.
He was speaking at the FSA's last annual meeting. Next year, the FSA will be split into two - the Prudential Regulation Authority, which will sit within the Bank of England, will focus on managing individual banks' stability. Meanwhile, the Financial Conduct Authority will be a new independent body regulating markets and how financial services firms behave.
Have shock jocks gone too far after Rush Limbaugh called Sandra Fluke a slut?
Former Google exec says he has 100,000 emails showing how 'immoral' company avoids paying UK tax
British business: We need to stay in the European Union - or risk losing up to £92bn a year
World news in pictures
British father faces charges after confessing to slitting his two children's throats in Lyon flat
- 1 Notes from a small island: Is Sealand an independent 'micronation' or an illegal fortress?
- 2 British business: We need to stay in the European Union - or risk losing up to £92bn a year
- 3 The moral case on tax avoidance is overwhelming - and we all know Google wants to do the right thing
- 4 Sam Wallace: The second coming of Jose Mourinho at Chelsea will be a reunion that can only end in tears
- 5 It’s official: thanks to Stephen Hawking's Israel boycott, anti-Semitism is no more
BMF is the UK’s biggest and best loved outdoor fitness classes
Win anything from gadgets to five-star holidays on our competitions and offers page.
iJobs Money & Business
£500 per day: Orgtel: A top tier banking client urgently requires Finance Gove...
£500 - £680 per day: Orgtel: Quantitative Risk Analyst, Front Office/Risk Bank...
£55000 - £60000 per annum + Benefits + Pension: Orgtel: Quantitative Analyst, ...
£550 - £600 per day: Orgtel: Fidessa Analyst / PM - Banking - London - Up to £...