Credit Crisis Archives - Page 5 of 10 - Emile Woolf writes

Hiding the truth with complexity: trust your own reason

When I started writing for this magazine over 40 years ago the editor was a wise old owl called Geoffrey Holmes. During a conversation on some thorny accounting controversy Geoffrey would slyly suggest that I tackle it in my next article. It was no use suggesting a different subject – he would simply look at […]

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Sanity will return – In its own time

Everyone knows that the world’s economic woes are soluble. Every leader acknowledges the blessings of free trade, low taxes, sound money and less regulation. Yet their actions, as ever, speak louder than words and somehow achieve the precise opposite. Take “free trade”. It allows cross-border commercial transactions to take place between willing traders unimpeded by […]

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Banking principles? A contradiction in terms

You hardly need an auditor to tell you what you can see for yourself. The unholy trinity of Central Bank, Treasury and the cabal of leading banking institutions has been operating a mutual self-help alliance that has rendered Britain’s banking capability utterly dysfunctional. The banking sector, overjoyed at the prospect of absorbing central bank largesse, […]

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Time to call the European Commission to Account

The subject of Europe polarises any otherwise rational debate. Obsessional prejudice, whether pro or con, induces deafness and drives out reason. More inflammatory even than party politics (where spin and expediency have blunted the ideals), passions over Europe (the Union, not the continent) have taken on the trappings of a belief system, susceptible to neither […]

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New face of banking regulation – and about time!

Regulation of the UK financial services industry is now entrusted to a new body with a new name and a new boss. Andrew Bailey, whose signature appears on your banknotes, takes over this month as chief executive of the Prudential Regulation Authority, successor to the FSA. Initial impressions augur well. In his first post-appointment interview […]

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Enhancing banks’ accounting regulation: and about time!

Regulation of the UK financial services industry is now entrusted to a new body with a new name and a new boss. Andrew Bailey, whose signature appears on your banknotes, takes over this month as chief executive of the Prudential Regulation Authority, successor to the FSA. Initial impressions augur well. In his first post-appointment interview […]

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Audit quality: is lack of competition the problem?

Twelve years ago, when their audit of Enron’s last accounts heralded the demise of Arthur Andersen, the largest end of the audit market shrank to four firms. The Competition Commission (CC) has now provisionally concluded that the audit market is restricted: companies are inhibited from switching auditors and there is a tendency for auditors to […]

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EU membership, in or out? Think it through but tread warily

“Expert” is defined as a  person whose research, knowledge and experience accords them the respect of  their peers in a well-distinguished domain. Economics is just such a domain, yet the degree of diversity in the views of  so-called experts can be astonishing. Take one of today’s most topical issues: will a UK exit from the […]

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All the forecasts are wrong

THE BARCHESTER CHRONICLE’  www.barchestergreen.co.uk by Emile Woolf www.emilewoolfwrites.co.uk Forecasts are a particular problem these days. From 2009 to 2011 every prediction, from the Chancellor’s Spending Reviews to the Bank of England’s official outlooks, suggested that economic growth, however modest, would return by late 2012. Even the Office of Budget Responsibility and the Institute of Fiscal […]

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