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The Grade II Listed Bank

I got a laugh the other day when I referred to Grade II Listed Banks, but I was serious.  For overseas readers, we have a system in Britain of listing heritage buildings.  They have various grades which restrict what you can do with them.  Grade I means you can’t really change the …

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The Twelve Banking Days of Christmas

Tis the season to be jolly and, in that spirit, I thought it was time to update some of our Christmas songs.  Here’s the revised version of the twelve days of Christmas ….   On the first day of Christmas my big bank sent to me: A diamond in an …

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A Banking Carol

It was almost December 25, Christmas, and Jimmy Diamond was a happy man for a change. Just this week his bank had opened 100,000 new customer accounts (even though only 25,000 people had visited the bank); they had managed to sneak an extra 1% onto credit card holders balances (without …

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American Express … and the Book of Mormon

So here’s a story you’re gonna love. I did an American friend a favour and, to say thank you, they sent me $500 in the post in the form of a travelers cheque. Really generous, thank you, but what the hell is a travelers cheque?  I vaguely remember them, but …

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Creating PayPal’s Perfect Storm

Apparently, I am a miscreant.  I am the one guy who managed to break PayPal.  What?  OK, here’s the story.  The next 2,000 words tell the story but, if you’d rather miss that and cut to the chase, jump to the end. Most of my customers wire me the money.  …

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Bank customers aren’t always right

It’s August – the quietest month in business.  Everyone I email sends back an out of office autoreply, and yet I’m here still blogging.  So what to blog about?  Well, this month might be a little inconsistent, but I do love posting funny stories in bank branches.  The reason is …

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FU EU #Brexit

Well, like all of you, I wake up this morning to find that the UK has decided to tell Europe to fork off.  You probably think I’m going to blog about what it all means and the implications for financial markets (I did that the other day and back in …

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The Bank Dick

It’s amazing what you stumble across on the internet. I was looking for some bank news the other day, when all of a sudden cropped up this clip from the 1940 film The Bank Dick (Detective) with the famous drinking actor W. C. Fields. I’m posting it partly because the head …

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Too Big To Change, Seagull Management and The Yes Team

Forget Too Big To Fail (TBTF), the real issue is that the global universal banks built between 1995 and 2015 are Too Big To Change (TBTC).  They are changing, but it’s not easy.  Think about it.  These banks have built themselves up into global powerhouses, operating in over 100 countries …

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