I believe in the free market and in the right of individuals to work hard and to prosper as a result of their hard work. But the shenanigans surrounding the purchase of Halifax Bank of Scotland by Lloyd's TSB leave me thinking our Government and their financial regulatory structures leave a lot to be desired.
Today we discovered that Gordon Brown personally knew that HBoS was in talks to be bought out by Lloyd's TSB a week ago and took personal control of ensuring the regulatory authorities approved the purchase given the current economic climate and despite potential monopolies concerns.
Knowing all this the Prime Minister then did nothing to stop the run on the banks shares over the past few days even though he knew there was no cause for concern about the banks liquidity. This means he knew that those attacking HBoS shares were doing so in order to make large "personal" financial gains and given the coordinated and sustained nature of trading he must have suspected there may have been an element of insider knowledge attached to these sales.
The loss of the Bank of Scotland brand from UK high streets and to Scotland's corporate and social life is a disaster. Scotland's second largest company had the right to expect our Government would protect them from unwarranted attack, but Government and its regulators let HBoS down. It's time for a Government who believes in protecting our great Institutions and that ensures fairness across our economy - clearly that rules the current Government out!