Thursday, 18 September 2008

high finance

Proposal for a new HBOS/Lloyds TSB corporate logo, created between calls

When I'm not a high-flying superhero, I have a humble day job working for the HBOS, a bank that's been in the news a fair bit over the last 24 hours. Here's a short selection of highlights from the day's reportage:

Pink seems to be the colour at Britain's new banking giant.

Lloyds TSB chairman Sir Victor Blank looked suave in a blue shirt, white collar and cuffs and pink tie. A tanned Eric Daniels, Lloyds chief executive, also chose a pink tie. While HBOS chief executive Andy Hornby, who looked like he could do with a long kip, sported a pink shirt.

The trio sat behind a banner reading "Lloyds TSB: For the journey", lets hope they're sitting comfortably because it looks like they'll be in for a long ride.

Mr Hornby, who the market refers to as a 'grocer who happens to run a bank' after moving from Asda to Halifax in 1999, looked anxious throughout the meeting and let Sir Victor and Mr Daniels take charge.
(Daily Telegraph)

Didn't help that we had a 30-odd year old shelf stacker in charge - a bank trying to sell mortgages on strategies based on selling tins of beans. And anybody who dared to point out the inherent risks (e.g. Benny Higgins) was politely asked to leave.

Greedy b*ggers. I hope Andy felt the hit buying up all those shares earlier this year. He won't though, it'll be those of us who helped create his wealth who'll suffer, as always.

(bigjamesie, Guardian business blog)

Shares in the troubled bank HBOS are up and down like a manic-depressive. It is tempting to assume that the brokers doing the buying and selling are every bit as febrile. Indeed, a study of 26 successful New York brokers from 2000 does suggest they are distinctly flaky.

They had high levels of depersonalisation (feeling detached from one's surroundings) and a staggering two-thirds were depressed. There were similarly high levels of anxiety and sleeplessness. The more they earned, the more likely they were to have these problems. Twice daily, they consumed both alcohol and an illegal substance (mostly cocaine). For relaxation, they chose solitary pursuits: jogging, masturbation and fishing were common.

(Oliver James, A Psychological Diagnosis of the Banking Crisis, The Guardian)

No comments: