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Letters: Eight long years in hock to the banks

Delaying the reform for eight years shows just how much “in hock” this government is to the financial sector (Osborne’s answer to the bank crisis – in eight years’ time, 13 September). The organisational changes are already in place with most banks. The financial readjustment would take a little longer because the casino boys are dependent on our savings (but not prepared to pay a fair price) and would squeal as they are withdrawn. Osborne and King could introduce a gradual change by forcing the banks to pay an additional 1% on individual savings accounts in year 1; 2% in year 2; and so on until the savings interest rate is at least 1% above inflation. This would eliminate the grossly unfair situation in which savers subsidise investment banking, capital markets etc, and let bankers get used to managing operations in a safe manner.
Derek Wharton
West Kirby, Wirral

• Why doesn’t the government restrict the £85,000 guarantee on deposits to banks that do not expose their customers to casino activities? And to avoid a panic withdrawal, introduce this in a staged way (maybe halved every year until the new structure become mandatory).
Bill Free
St Albans, Hertfordshire

• Interesting that the government can speed things up where it works in its rich friends’ interests (eg dismantling the NHS), but not where it doesn’t (reforming the banks).
Jennifer Jenkins

• The Tories are waiting eight years, hoping by then the recession will have blown itself out, public anger largely gone, and the reforms been quietly forgotten halfway through a glorious second term. That way they can keep their paymasters on side, and assuage public anger now.
Dick Cave

• The proposals sound like cowardice to me. A truly radical shake-up would ban the trading of derivatives and hedge funds. The fact these trades distort the market means high street and investment banks will still be linked.
Rod White
Dursley, Gloucestershire

• Now that casino investment banking is to be separated from the high street banks, why not ask customers if the high street banks could be reconstituted as a mutual societies? Rather in the same way as the building societies mutuality was mutilated by the carpetbaggers a few years ago? Could we have our cash back?
Mark O’Connor

• So, the good news is it is OK to have a banking crisis in the next eight years! Bonuses all round, eh?
Howard Pilott
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