Johnson reveals that university he was an environmentalist

Debate: Was Boris Johnson right to call EU bonus cap a ‘moronic’ idea?

Related Topics


What's going on?

Mayor of London Boris Johnson has condemned EU plans to limit bankers' bonuses to double or treble their base salaries as a "moronic piece of economic policy".

MEPs in Brussels drew-up the plans in the wake of growing anger at the runaway sums bankers can command on top of their wage. It is also hoped the initiative will curb the kind of "excessive risk taking" that led to the 2008 financial crisis.

Johnson voiced concerns that any limit on payouts, which European finance ministers are scheduled to discuss in detail on Tuesday, will hit the competitiveness of London's financial sector and lead to job losses.

He added: "I object in principle to the idea of trying to regulate remuneration in that kind of detail from Brussels".

Does Bo-Jo have a point?

Case for: Suffer together

A bonus cap smacks more of vengeance than of competent policy-making. Damage the competitiveness of Britain's financial sector and it won't be the bankers who suffer - they can move abroad if London's still-extremely-high pay disappoints - it will be the rest of society. Even if you favour stronger regulation of the city, this is not the way to go about it. It's unlikely to curb risk-taking - and the galling boom in pay via salaries (37% across the EU in the last four years) will only speed up to compensate.

Case against: Toughen up

That Boris Johnson has pals in the city - and is likely to want to protect them - is a criticism so often employed as to be almost threadbare. But that does not make his latest outburst any less suspicious. For too long the UK government has mollycoddled the very people whose risk-taking put us in the economic mess we find ourselves in now. Strong regulation is vital to ensure nothing similar happens again. The only pity here is it took European intervention to take the difficult decision.

Boris Johnson was right to call a bonus cap "moronic"

Read Next
Andy Coulson  

Andy Coulson: With former News of the World editor cleared of perjury charges, what will he do next?

James Cusick James Cusick
Jack Warner  

Fifa corruption: Strip Qatar of the World Cup? Not likely

Tom Peck
Syria civil war: Meet the military commander who says his soldiers will not rest until every inch of their war torn country is free of Islamist 'terrorists'

‘We won’t stop until Syria is back to normal’

Near the front lines with Islamist-controlled towns where Assad’s troops were besieged just last month, Robert Fisk meets a commander confidently preparing his soldiers for battle
The inside story of how Bill Clinton built a $2bn global foundation may undermine Hillary's chances

The inside story of how Bill Clinton built a $2bn global foundation...

... and how it may undermine Hillary's chances in 2016
12 best olive oils

Extra-virgin, cold-press, early-harvest, ultra-premium: 12 best olive oils

Choosing an olive oil is a surprising minefield. Save yourself the hassle with our handy guide
Sepp Blatter resignation: The beginning of Fifa's long road to reform?

Does Blatter's departure mean Fifa will automatically clean up its act?

Don't bet on it, says Tom Peck
Charles Kennedy: The baby of the House who grew into a Lib Dem giant

The baby of the House who grew into a Lib Dem giant

Charles Kennedy was consistently a man of the centre-left, dedicated to social justice, but was also a champion of liberty and an opponent of the nanny-state, says Baroness Williams
Syria civil war: The harrowing testament of a five-year-old victim of this endless conflict

The harrowing testament of a five-year-old victim of Syria's endless civil war

Sahar Qanbar lost her mother and brother as civilians and government soldiers fought side by side after being surrounded by brutal Islamist fighters. Robert Fisk visited her
The future of songwriting: How streaming is changing everything we know about making music

The future of songwriting

How streaming is changing everything we know about making music
William Shemin and Henry Johnson: Jewish and black soldiers receive World War I Medal of Honor amid claims of discrimination

Recognition at long last

Jewish and black soldiers who fought in WWI finally receive medals after claims of discrimination
Beating obesity: The new pacemaker which helps over-eaters

Beating obesity

The new pacemaker which helps over-eaters
9 best women's festival waterproofs

Ready for rain: 9 best women's festival waterproofs

These are the macs to keep your denim dry and your hair frizz-free(ish)
Cycling World Hour Record: Nervous Sir Bradley Wiggins ready for pain as he prepares to go distance

Wiggins worried

Nervous Sir Bradley ready for pain as he prepares to attempt cycling's World Hour Record
Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Reds baulk at Christian Benteke £32.5m release clause
On your feet! Spending at least two hours a day standing reduces the risk of heart attacks, cancer and diabetes, according to new research

On your feet!

Spending half the day standing 'reduces risk of heart attacks and cancer'
With scores of surgeries closing, what hope is there for the David Cameron's promise of 5,000 more GPs and a 24/7 NHS?

The big NHS question

Why are there so few new GPs when so many want to study medicine?
Big knickers are back: Thongs ain't what they used to be

Thongs ain't what they used to be

Big knickers are back