ResPublica, a think tank, has come up with the bizarre recommendation that in order for public trust in the banks to be restored bankers should swear an oath.
"As countless scandals demonstrate, virtue is distinctly absent from our banking institutions.An extract from the oath says:
Britain's bankers lack a sense of ethos and the institutions they work for lack a clearly defined social purpose."
"I will do my utmost to behave in a manner that prioritises the needs of customers.All very well and nice, but to whom do the bankers swear this oath?
It is my first duty to provide an exemplary quality of service to my customers and to exhibit a duty of care above and beyond what is required by law....
..I will confront profligacy and impropriety wherever I encounter it, for the conduct of bankers can have dramatic consequence for society."
BBA executive director for financial policy and operations, Paul Chisnall, said:
"Restoring trust and confidence is the banking industry's number one priority.An oath of course would mean absolutely nothing, and would entail a very small administrative burden. Hence the fact that the BBA rather likes the idea!
But meaningful cultural change in an industry as complex and diverse as banking takes time....
..very well could be part of the answer".