Rewarded for failure
Hector Sants, the chief executive of the Financial Services Authority, who failed to prevent or detect mis-selling of payment protection insurance, the Barclays Libor-fixing scandal and the bank failures which led to an ongoing economic crisis, has been rewarded by a knighthood in the New Year’s Honours List.
He passes through the revolving door – twice
Mr Sants showed the chairman of the Treasury Select Committee correspondence with Barclays, in which he had raised profound concerns about the culture and governance arrangements at Barclays, and yet a few months later he accepted a senior appointment as Barclays head of compliance. Antony Jenkins, now Barclays chief executive, is said to have recruited Mr Sants to “bolster the status of Barclays’ compliance and regulatory oversight functions and make them integral to the way the bank operates”.
So Mr Sants moved from banking to regulating financial services, then back again to employment in this sector.
Professor Scott Cato blogs:
“Awarding a public honour to such a man is just to rub our noses in the culture of rewards for failure, while the price of the failure is borne by citizens who just work hard or the vulnerable who rely on public services”.
She points out the man’s blatant double standards:
“In his evidence to the Treasury Committee inquiry Sants commented that people who have shown ‘serial misjudgement’ should not be allowed to run financial organisations again.
“Although he also confessed to his own failure in this evidence he does not seem to think this undermines his right to a multi-million pound job as head of compliance at Barclays.
“In awarding him a knighthood the establishment clearly agree. His service to British banking has been rewarded; the devastation wreaked on the British people and our economy ignored.”
We hope that the cartoon forecast will not be accurate
Cynically, Ripped off Britain looks ahead, commenting on both reward and the view of Sants’ intention to restore Barclays’ reputation:
A. He will certainly be using all his FSA skills . . .
B. To expose dodgy dealing?
A. No. To conceal it even better so they never get caught.