Don't you just feel there is something wrong with the banking system in the UK?
It seems obvious that the five huge private banks that dominate banking in the UK operate AGAINST the public interest, yet still demand rescue when their gambling goes wrong. How many times have they been caught out for mis-selling, over-charging, money-laundering, manipulating rates, fraud, etc etc. They are supposed to help businesses but often seem intent on scamming and overcharging them and closing them down at the least reason. All they seem to have learned from the last crash is that if their gambles go wrong, the taxpayer will rescue them. In the meantime, they are happy to pocket the bonuses "earned" by the profits of their manipulation, fraud and gambling. It's no wonder the enquiry into banking culture had to be abandoned.
But there is a different type of banking - a type of banking that works FOR the public interest and is 25% of banking worldwide and over 40% in such successful economies as Germany. But it is never talked about in the UK, and it is public banking. Public Banks are owned by our democratic institutions, but not operated by them. They are banks for which the ultimate motivation is not profit maximisation but what most benefits the public. They are banks that are operated by public servants on salaries, with no bonus/fee/commission expectation, who, like teachers and doctors, just have a desire to make society and people's lives better.
These banks can be owned by national, regional and local authorities as happens in Germany. They fund SME's, infrastructure, co-operative start-ups, public housing and green initiatives. The local banks in Germany, the Sparkasse, are not allowed to gamble in the financial markets and so did not suffer in the crash. They continued lending to SME's throughout, making recovery from the recession easier. The Sparkasse provide safe, inexpensive banking for the local administrations, saving them millions and can provide inexpensive loans for projects that will pay for themselves, such as for public housing or green initiatives.
These Sparkasse type banks would be perfect for allowing the devolving city administrations to gain some financial independence from London and help local prosperity. As we can learn from the Bank of England and Positive Money, banks create money when they make loans, so local public banks provide locally generated money that helps the local economy. No inflation is caused as the money goes into the productive sector.
This conference features some of the best international minds on how banking can be made to work in the public interest. It concludes by figuring out a plan of action on how we can get the new City authorities to consider this option and at least run feasability studies and bring in the SBFIC to help. Also on how we can get public banking on the manifestos of the Uk's political parties as has happened in Ireland.
9:30am – 10am Registration and tea/coffee
10:15–10:35 Frank van Lerven, banking researcher at http://positivemoney.org/ explaining how banks create money when they make loans, and how most of this money is mis-allocated.
10:35-10:55 Fionn Travers-Smith, campaign manager of http://moveyourmoney.org.uk/ about the litany of wrongdoings of the UK's private banks and the benefits of public banking and how local public banking is necessary to achieve real financial independence for the north.
10:55-11:05 Comfort break
11:05-12:05 Richard Werner, Professor of International Banking. He has worked in many countries and is a major researcher on banking and banking reform, becoming a leading proponent of local banking following his extensive research on banking and what type of banks work best for the public good. He will be talking about Banking for the Community - Lessons from Germany, though other countries will be mentioned!
12:05 -12:45 Thomas Marois, of SOAS, who has researched how public banks help developing countries and how many arguments against public banking are myths. His talk is titled "Public Banks as Catalyzers of Social Development"
12:45-1:45 Lunch break
1:45-2:45 Ellen Brown from the USA and author of "Web of Debt" http://www.webofdebt.com/ and "The Public Banking Solution" http://www.publicbankinginstitute.org/ on her extensive research on public banking and how it can provide the answer to many problems in the economy.
2:45- (4:30 - 5:00)
Panel and discussions about how a movement for public banking in the UK can go forward
Ellen Brown, as above
Noel Kinahan, from Ireland, a leading campaigner for local public banking and liaison to many visits from the Sparkasse outreach programme, the SBFIC, this has resulted in local public banking being on the manifesto of four of the political parties in the upcoming Irish election.
Duncan McCann, from NEF (New Economics Foundation),he will talk about why regions can benefit from financial independence and that this can be achieved through dedicated financial institutions (like public banks) or through creating alternative currencies.
Fionn Travers-Smith, as above
To learn more on public banking, please listen to Marie's interview with Dr Thomas Marois, on the radio show "Why Don't Economists? ".https://audioboom.com/boos/4075926-why-don-t-economists-13th-january-2016.
She also interviews Fionn Travis-Smith of MoveYourMoney.org.uk about why the UK needs local banking to give regions some financial independence https://audioboom.com/boos/4170470-why-don-t-economists-11th-feb-2016