Aristóbulo de Juan | Bankers are administrators of other people’s money, and they are responsible both to their depositors and to other stakeholders. Human nature being what it is, however, they sometimes fall prey to overweening ambition, coming to see themselves as the rightful beneficiaries of the moneys entrusted to them. This can lead them to make poor lending decisions and engage in risky practices, eventually moving on to cosmetic accounting and the concealment of problems, speculation and even outright fraud.
MADRID | The Corner | Central bankers are meeting this week in Jackson Hole to talk about employment and its weakness in general terms. Unlike what is happening in Europe, US and UK are seeing improvement in employment (their unemployment rates have decreased from 10% to 6.2% and from 8.4% to 6.4%, respectively) with the curiosity that they’re not coming with wage increases. In fact, last British data shows the first fall since 2009. This circumstance means less inflationary pressures, therefore Bankinter analysts think that central banks will not start to tense its monetary policy until wages begin to invigorate, something that will take some months to arrive.
MADRID | By Ana Fuentes | Everyone is commenting on BNP Paribas historic settlement and the eventual fines that other EU banks might face (read our yesterday’s post), and the missed opportunity to really punish their illegal practices. And yet no financial savvy is talking about Iceland’s Reykjavík County Court handing out severe prison sentences to four bankers for market manipulation and breach of fiduciary duty. As London-based Icelandic reporter Sigrún Davíðsdóttir explains, “this case is not one of the big ones involving major investors or bank managers (…), but there are other similar cases snarling their way through courts.”
BEIJING | By Yang Lu at Caixin | In China, nervous businessmen spent final hours of 2013 waiting outside regulator’s offices for word they’d be among the lucky few to IPO approval.