Picture_1Shadow Chancellor George Osborne has just been interviewed by Andrew Marr; there were no grand policy announcements, but here’s a run down of the points he was making:

  • Bonuses for senior management at government backed banks are "simply unacceptable";
  • "The party is over for the banks… you can’t go on paying yourself 20 times what a heart surgeon gets";
  • He raised the potential for this issue to blow up at the Tory conference last year, but the Government’s attitude is too hand to mouth. There are too many reviews and short-term initiatives. "People want leadership from this Government";
  • He wouldn’t rule out printing money – quantative easing – but it is there as a last resort and the fact that it is being thought about is an indication of how the Government’s other economic measures have failed;
  • The VAT cut was supposed to be the big answer, yet people are lining up to say the Government’s response to the crisis has been inadequate;
  • The Bank of England made mistakes over the last decade – not spotting the levels of debt building up in the economy, the asset boom, housing inflation – but Gordon Brown was at the wheel of the ship for ten years as Chancellor and shouldn’t be seeking to blame others for the crisis now;
  • On the Bank of England, appointments to the monetary policy need to be more transparent, the Governor should be appointed for a single fixed term and the Bank should be given greater powers;
  • On so-called "moral capitalism", he said that whilst markets are "far better than other systems" when it comes to distributing resources and rewards, they are "a means to and ends" and not the "be-all and end-all" as government needs to address the unfairnesses created by markets.

20 comments for: George Osborne’s thoughts on the economy this Sunday morning

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