Today the Bank of England is getting ready to welcome the public to its first ever Open Forum. The event is part of Carney’s drive to end the Age of Irresponsibility in the City, says the Guardian.
Half the 400-strong audience will consist of members of the public who were allocated their seats by ballot and will have an opportunity to sit close to representatives of the banks blamed for crashing the economy and besmirching the reputation of the financial sector, some sharp journalists write. The event is the authorities' latest effort to rehabilitate the spoilt reputation of the City of London.
The public will hear from the U.K. chancellor, George Osborne, as well as Carney, ECB chief Mario Draghi and many top officials in the banking sector.
In an interview with Sky News, Carney said that Britain’s financial
sector has fixed some of the problems that contributed to the last
Traveling around the U.K., he has seen that the public awaits two things.
1) Banks should be allowed to go bankrupt like any other business, rather than being bailed out because they’re ‘too big to fail’;
2) Individual bankers should be brought to account.
There is progress, Carney insists:
“I think what’s happening now is that the bankers are starting to be part of the solution, not part of the problem."
When asked if he’ll ever hug a banker (an echo of David Cameron’s famous pledge to Hug a Hoodie in 2006), Carney replies:
"I won’t think you want your governor giving that kind of advice. Neither I nor my successors will be hugging any bankers."
But his aim is to reach the point where people respect bankers, and bankers can crack on with serving the public.
The system is changing, Carney notes, so remaining bad apples in the barrel are held to account. Like any profession, finance has a lot of talented people, working with integrity to do the right thing, Carney adds. It’s the U.K.’s largest exporter, contributing 8% of GDP.
It is possible to watch the forum live here.