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Don’t blame bankers, Sandler tells advisers

SimplyBiz chairman Ken Davy has hit out at Northern Rock chairman Ron Sandler for defending banks in a speech at the Chartered Insurance Institute’s president’s dinner in London last week.

Sandler, who is a former president of the Chartered Institute of Bankers, attracted criticism from the adviser community after urging CII members to recognise the good work of the banks while he hit out at his audience of advisers and insurance companies.

He said in his speech at London’s Guildhall: “Accountability is right but holding to account is not the same as blaming. One of the uglier aspects of the present recession is the scapegoating of bankers in ways which are, in my view, inaccurate, intemperate and superficial. There are many other parties which are at least as culpable, if not more so.”

SimplyBiz chairman Ken Davy says: “It was very disappointing to hear him defending the bankers and the institutions in the way he did. We have to look to the future to a new and positive role for banking but the reality is that the behaviour of a number of major institutions has proved to be reckless in the extreme and has created a near-disaster for the economy. We are suffering and will continue to suffer from their mistakes for many years to come.”

“He demonstrated in his comments that he is out of touch with the progress that has been made in so many areas of financial services in recent years.”

Whitechurch Network managing director Ian McIver says: “I am not overly unsettled with the content of what he said, I am just unsettled by the fact that Ron Sandler said it. He is sitting there earning a salary out of Northern Rock, which played a huge part in the crisis and so it sticks in the throat.”

CII president’s dinner report, p27, Comment, p47

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