Worst US banks buying political clout

Global union UNI has described a new International Monetary Fund (IMF) report as important evidence of the extent to which US banks “bought” political influence to create a lax regulatory regime, which precipitated the global financial meltdown. The IMF report found that the banks that lobbied the most had the most lax lending standards and the fastest growing mortgage loan portfolios.

“The finance industry and markets became a giant casino,” said UNI General Secretary Philip Jennings. “This study shows the banks invested heavily to bring about lax regulation to ensure that the house always wins; the politicians always fold and do the banks’ bidding; and taxpayers, customers and bank branch workers are always dealt the losing hand.”

Taxpayer funds were used to pay off the banks’ bad gambling debts, but instead of showing gratitude or contrition, finance executives are just pouring new money into lobbying once again for conditions that stack the odds in their favour and keeping regulators at bay to avoid taxes on bank bonuses.

“We need politicians to stand strong and rethink their commitment to their constituents, redesign a fair regulatory system and rebuild a global economy for the people,” said Jennings.

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