Outgoing boss of City watchdog says bank behaviour is better

Elizabeth Fournier
LORD Adair Turner believes the banking sector has seen a “major shift” in attitude over the past year, and that it’s time for the public’s perception of bankers to catch up with that fact.

Lord Turner says in an interview with the Sunday Telegraph that bankers had been in denial for a period about how much they had to change.

“I think over the past year we’ve seen a major shift,” he says.

“I think the substance has now moved on a bit more than the perception has and the perception’s got to catch up with the substance.”

Lord Turner once said that many of the activities bankers did were “socially useless.”

“I think we – as the authorities, central banks, regulators, those involved today – are the inheritors of a 50-year-long, large intellectual and policy mistake,” he told the newspaper.

“We allowed the banking system to run with much too high levels of leverage, inadequate levels of capital, and we ignored the development of leverage in the financial system and in the real economy.”