I might have known that Shadow Business Secretary Chuka Umunna would come out with a vote winning, but banal policy over investment banking ‘buy-out’ bonuses. His policy to ban ‘take-over’ driven bonuses on grounds of conflict of interest and whether the best interests of the companies concerned, would be best served, will, I am afraid, be met with derision.
I suspect that Mr Umunna is unaware of the fact that investment banking is global. If that kind of restriction were implemented then the likes of Goldman Sachs, UBS, Morgan Stanley, Citibank, JP Morgan Chase and Deutsche Bank, will just fill their boots from their offices, which are not under jurisdiction of a Labour government’s ant-business policies. Consequently the Government would be a loser on all counts – Corporation tax, CGT, income tax and retail. Now that’s a brilliant idea, isn’t it?
As for Labour wanting to introduce protectionist policies; surely we want to leave that nonsense to Germany and France. The world of free enterprise and ethical capitalism is the only way forward. If Astra Zeneca is a takeover target on price, with best endeavours over employment, then so be it. As Leslie Crowther said all those years ago, “Come on down if the price is right!” We have had disappointments in the past such as Kraft’s takeover of Cadbury Schweppes and we must learn from those mistakes.
Unfortunately bad behaviour by bank personnel over issues such as LIBOR, PPI and now FX manipulation, will further draw the attention of Andrew Tyrie’s Treasury Select Committee, to act viscerally and positively. The TSC is incandescent with rage at bank management’s inability to stay on top of their responsibilities to prevent this slew of unacceptable misdemeanours. The TSC, aided and abetted by influential and ethically driven luminaries such as Lord Lawson and Archbishop Welby will understandably insist on the ‘ring fencing’ banking business. I just hope and pray that Tyrie and his cohorts can disseminate the difference between good policing and the necessity for commercial flair and innovation!