Saturday, March 14, 2009

Banks to EU: "Just Gimme the Dough!"

Just one more example of bank corruption...

Banks must disclose their problem assets if they want to avoid lengthy wrangling with Brussels over aid schemes, Europe’s top competition watchdog warned at the weekend.

In a tough-talking speech, EU competition commissioner Neelie Kroes told executives that she would not sign off on restructuring schemes under European Union state aid rules if banks continued to conceal their troubled assets.

”To protect taxpayers and maintain the level playing-field, the public purse will simply not be open to banks who do not want to open their books in return,” she told a conference, organised by Deutsche Bank.

Ms Kroes expressed frustration at the way banks had been behaving to date. ”In many recent meetings with bank chief executives, I am told their bank is fine, but the other banks have problems. They cannot all be right,” she said.¬

”So the high levels of transparency we are demanding are essential for determining the full scope of our collective problems and rebuilding trust.”

Underscoring the threat to the global economy posed by corrupt banking practices,

Robert Zoellick, president of the World Bank, said that rich country fiscal stimulus programmes would be little more than a “sugar high” unless they were supported by concrete steps to clean up bad assets in banks.

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