World leaders take on financial institutions’ profits

The Group of 20 nations met early this week to discuss the looming global recession, and world leaders, according to “put banks and investors on notice they will need to keep more capital and reveal more about their holdings, signaling the industry may emerge from the current crisis with less potential for profit”.

The meeting took place just before New York based bank Citigroup announced it plans to cut over 50,000 jobs.

G20 leaders are in disagreement over how much power bank regulation will have. European leaders, including French President Nicolas Sarkozy and German Chancellor Angela Merkel, pushed for some form of state control over lending practices and cross-border investment. This was opposed by outgoing US President Bush.

The International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC) President Sharan Burrows went to Washington for G20 leaders meeting and said “Working families are suffering enormously as a result of the cavalier, unregulated behaviour of corporate cowboys over the past decade”.

The ITUC released a document called the ‘Washington Declaration’ which calls for an end to the ideology of unfettered financial markets, “where self-regulation has been exposed as a fraud and greed has overridden rational judgement to the detriment of the real economy”.


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