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The recklessness of Cummings

In Blog by Ian Fraser12 Comments

13 July  2009 Speaking on Bloomberg TV, Justin Urquhart-Stewart, director of Seven Investment Management, has described HBOS as being “pregnant with the spawn of Satan” by the time Lloyds TSB saved it from extinction last September. I don’t think he’s far wrong. Most of the damage was done in the corporate …

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Time for a Boots boycott

In Blog by Ian Fraser3 Comments

10 June 2009 The main beneficiaries of Stefano Pessina’s decision to appoint Andy Hornby as chief executive of Alliance Boots will be rival chains Superdrug and Lloyds Pharmacies, and to a lesser extent the supermarket chains such as Tesco, Sainsbury’s, Morrisons and Asda, as customers vote with their feet and …

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The extraordinary lapses that caused HBOS’s collapse

In Blog by Ian Fraser3 Comments

28 May 2009 Introductory note: An edited version of this article was published on the BBC News website under headline Why did HBOS make risky loans on May 27th, 2009. All the current and former HBOS insiders interviewed for this article did so on condition of anonymity.  Soon after it was …

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“Bling” Crosby’s day of reckoning

In Article Library by Ian Fraser0 Comments

By Ian Fraser Published: Sunday Herald Date: 15 February 2009 This charade of apology is a diversion from bankers’ role in financial destruction EDITH Piaf’s “Non, Je Ne Regrette Rien” seems to be the theme tune for Britain’s banking fraternity right now. The unfab four – Lord Stevenson, Andy Hornby, …

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Howard’s unorthodox riding style may yet cripple the black horse

In Blog by Ian Fraser1 Comment

12 December 2008 HOWARD Brown, the Halifax teller-turned-minor celebrity,  risks crippling his new steed, Lloyds TSB’s black horse, with his cavalier riding style. HBOS’s trading update this morning is scary stuff. In what appears to be an exercise in “kitchen sinking”, HBOS has revealed that its balance sheet is in …

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Sir George on Peston: he’s a Treasury puppet and it’s a disgrace

In Blog by Ian Fraser2 Comments

16 November 2008 Former Royal Bank of Scotland chairman Sir George Mathewson doesn’t think too highly of BBC business editor Robert Peston (who was lampooned in Silly Money, tonight’s Bremner Bird & Fortune programme). In an interview published in today’s Sunday Times (Mathewson: Riding to the rescue of HBOS), Mathewson who retired from …

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Why Hornby should turn down Blank’s offer

In Blog by Ian Fraser0 Comments

4 November 2008 It is a disgrace that Andy Hornby, the man who destroyed HBOS, has been handed a £60,000 a month contract by Sir Victor Blank, the chairman of Lloyds TSB, to help integrate the two banks. Perhaps this is his reward for delivering HBOS into the jaws of …

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Call to sack HBOS directors

In Article Library by Ian Fraser1 Comment

By Ian Fraser Published: Sunday Herald Date: 28 September 2008 NONE OF the 15 board directors of Halifax Bank of Scotland should be permitted to join the board of the merged Lloyds Halifax banking and financial services group. The stark claim comes from Professor Stewart Hamilton, one of Scotland’s leading …