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Things worth reading: 21st September 2009

Things we're reading today include …

Today's must read

The Financial Crisis and America’s Casino Culture (New York Times)

"Throughout the history of American commercial life, one cultural trait
has tended to dominate: Americans are optimists, a people prone to
seeing the glass as not merely half-full but rapidly expanding, and
bearing liquid that might yet be turned into gold.

"This exuberant optimism has
proven beneficial, emboldening risk-taking that has achieved innovation
and wealth. It has prompted entrepreneurs to invest borrowed money in
untested ideas that sometimes yield breakthroughs. It has encouraged
ordinary people to accept debt in the name of accelerated gain — more
comfortable homes, higher education, late-model cars.

"Yet in
recent times this eagerness to augment the present by borrowing against
a seemingly lucrative future has reached dangerous levels. Excessive
optimism and its close relation — a reckless disregard of risk — are
widely blamed for helping carry the United States into the worst
financial panic since the Great Depression."


G20 Meeting

Why G20 is likely to be a damp squib (Telegraph)
Sarkozy to press for 'Tobin Tax'
 (BBC)

Regulations

Bank regulator worried by complacency 
(Financial Times)
Global bank regulator says treat recent improvements at banks with caution 
(Telegraph)
Maybe the banks are in worse trouble than we realise 
(Financial Times)
Slower banking reforms will run deeper 
(Telegraph)

Economy

The rich recover as the poor suffer (BBC)
HSBC bids farewell to dollar supremacy 
(Telegraph)
Is the Recent Rally Irrational Exuberance? 
(New York Times)

Banks

How Banks Should Manage Risk 
(Business Week)
Retailers Ready for Fight on Credit-Card Fees 
(Time)
RBS won't comment on share report 
(BBC)
Citibank teams up with Virgin to shake up Big Four 
(The Australian)

What?

'Fred the Shred' back in the City (News of the World)

Quote of the Day:

"As if they really knew, leading economists predict that recovery from
our Great Recession will be plodding, gray and jobless. But they don't
know, and can't. The future is unfathomable."

From Bear to Bull (Wall Street Journal)


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About Chris M Skinner

Chris M Skinner

Chris Skinner is best known as an independent commentator on the financial markets through his blog, the Finanser.com, as author of the bestselling book Digital Bank, and Chair of the European networking forum the Financial Services Club. He has been voted one of the most influential people in banking by The Financial Brand (as well as one of the best blogs), a FinTech Titan (Next Bank), one of the Fintech Leaders you need to follow (City AM, Deluxe and Jax Finance), as well as one of the Top 40 most influential people in financial technology by the Wall Street Journal’s Financial News. To learn more click here…

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