“Bankers: From Pillars to Pariahs.”
Held on Wednesday, July 4, 2018, 12.30-2.15pm
Pete Hahn (LIBF)
“In their dedication, their lack of greed, and their sense of quiet service, the joint stock bankers (i.e. the clearing bankers) provide a placid, safe centre to financial Britain.”
- Anthony Sampson, The Anatomy of Britain, 1962.
Whether Captain Mainwaring was ever a fair representation of Britain’s bankers, there is little doubt that he was a popular representation – something today’s bankers can only dream about. Yet, as Ian Peacock reminds us in Bankers: from Pillars to Pariahs, some of the myths of the traditional British banker were just that.
The book provides a useful reminder of the exclusive and uncompetitive practices that historically dogged the sector, as well as examining the damage wrought on public perceptions by pre- and post-crisis failings. The question is whether bankers will ever be able to rebuild their image as ‘pillars of the community’, or at least as responsible members of it.
Ian Peacock is closer than some to the old ideal: chair of The Housing Finance Corporation and a non-executive director at (unlimited liability) C. Hoare & Co. He was a career banker with Kleinwort Benson Group, BZW and Barclays before stepping on to advisory and non-executive positions with the Bank of England, Mothercare and Norwich and Peterborough Building Society, among others.
Leading the response to Ian’s conclusions will be Pete Hahn – long-time senior banker at Citi, senior advisor to the PRA in the post-crisis years, and now responsible for training the next generation of bankers as dean and Henry Grunfeld Professor of Banking at the London Institute of Banking & Finance.
If you or a colleague would like to join us for this perennial debate about the status of bankers (deserved or otherwise), please let us know by calling 0207 621 1056 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. As usual, wine and sandwiches will be provided.