George's Feed
Dec 6, 2012

Deutsche spat reopens mark-to-model/myth debate

(The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions
expressed are his own)

By George Hay

LONDON, Dec 6 (Reuters Breakingviews) – Deutsche Bank
(DBKGn.DE: Quote, Profile, Research) is battling to move on from 2008 and the heart of the
financial crisis. Former employees of the German bank allege it
hid $12 bln of losses as the credit crunch hit. It reopens the
debate over whether marking shaky assets to model was actually
marking to myth – and whether it mattered.

Dec 5, 2012

British bank levy hike even sillier than feared

(The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions
expressed are his own)

By George Hay

LONDON, Dec 5 (Reuters Breakingviews) – The UK’s hike in its
bank levy shows a lack of joined-up thinking. The coalition
really wants the country’s biggest banks to support the UK’s
misfiring economy by lending more. Its latest tax grab
incentivises them to lend less.

Dec 3, 2012

UK bank steroids are working for the wrong reason

(The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions
expressed are his own)

By George Hay

LONDON, Dec 3 (Reuters Breakingviews) – The medicine
prescribed to get UK banks lending again isn’t really working.
But at least the side effects are positive.

Dec 3, 2012

UK bank capital probe puts heat on RBS

(The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions
expressed are his own)

By George Hay

LONDON, Dec 3 (Reuters Breakingviews) – The great UK bank
capital probe puts heat on Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS.L: Quote, Profile, Research). The
Bank of England warned on Nov. 29 that the domestic banks it
regulates may not be setting aside enough to deal with future
losses. Making definitive judgments about who this affects isn’t
easy. RBS won’t be the only to attract attention. But the
state-dominated lender could well find itself fielding some of
the first questions.

Nov 29, 2012
via Breakingviews

Spain’s bank rescue is part bail-in, part bail-out

Photo

By George Hay and Neil Unmack

The authors are Reuters Breakingviews columnists. The opinions expressed are their own

Spain’s bank haircuts are part bail-in, and part bail-out. The indebted government has lopped 10 billion euros off its euro zone-funded bank rescue bill by cutting the value of its worst lenders’ hybrid debt. Yet if it hadn’t been for political considerations, the burden-sharing might have been greater.

Nov 29, 2012

BREAKINGVIEWS:Spain’s bank rescue is part bail-in, part bail-out

(The authors are Reuters Breakingviews columnists. The opinions
expressed are their own)

By George Hay and Neil Unmack

LONDON, Nov 29 (Reuters Breakingviews) – Spain’s bank
haircuts are part bail-in, and part bail-out. The indebted
government has lopped 10 billion euros off its euro zone-funded
bank rescue bill by cutting the value of its worst lenders’
hybrid debt. Yet if it hadn’t been for political considerations,
the burden-sharing might have been greater.

Nov 28, 2012
via Breakingviews

Carney at BoE changes the game for UK banks

Photo

By George Hay

The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own

Mark Carney’s appointment as governor of the Bank of England changes the game for UK banks. On the big issues – capital, liquidity, and structural reform – the Canadian central banker is unlikely to deviate significantly from current policies. But the new man’s different skills and interests, compared to current incumbent Mervyn King, could still make a tangible difference.

Nov 26, 2012

UK should resist yet another bank levy hike

(The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions
expressed are his own)

By George Hay

LONDON, Nov 26 (Reuters Breakingviews) – The UK should
resist yet another bank levy hike. When the coalition’s annual
tax on lenders’ balance sheets was announced in June 2010, it
looked a smart way to raise cash while encouraging banks to
slash risky short-term funding. But bankers now expect a third
hike in the levy’s rate. This sensible tax risks becoming a
joke.

Nov 23, 2012

Monte dei Paschi finds patriotism doesn’t pay

(The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions
expressed are his own)

By George Hay

LONDON, Nov 23 (Reuters Breakingviews) – Monte dei Paschi
(BMPS.MI: Quote, Profile, Research) is about to find out that patriotism doesn’t pay. The
venerable Italian bank had hoped that the latest 1.5 billion
euros of bailout cash it received from the Italian government
wouldn’t end up diluting its existing shareholders too much. But
Brussels is likely to nip this in the bud.

Nov 6, 2012

Investment banks’ next challenge: cutting salaries

(The authors are Reuters Breakingviews columnists. The opinions
expressed are their own)

By Peter Thal Larsen and George Hay

HONG KONG/LONDON, Nov 6 (Reuters Breakingviews) – Investment
banks are facing a new conundrum: how to cut their employees’
salaries. The industry made a collective blunder when it
responded to the crisis by upping basic pay, particularly for
senior bankers. That has made it harder for banks to cut costs
as revenue withers. Reversing the hike won’t be easy, especially
as regulations remain uncertain. But if the alternative is to
chop a greater number of jobs, employees may reluctantly agree.

    • About George

      "George Hay writes about the banking and property sectors. He joined from Thomson Financial News, where he was a companies correspondent. Before that he worked at United Business Media, where he was news editor of Building Magazine. He has a first in English Literature from Edinburgh University, and was nominated in two categories at the 2009 Business Journalist of the Year Awards."
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