Wednesday 15 October 2008

King Cable consolidates as shareholders attack

The warning that the "value of shares can go up as well as down" is clearly marked on the packet. Yes, as the market shows right now, it does what it says on the tin.
So why then do some people who have invested feel that when the government stepped in to save the whole banking system closing down, and a major run on banks on the high street, that they have personally been short changed.
A representative of the UK Shareholders Association was on the Today programme this morning raging at Vince Cable about how he didn't understand finance or the way shareholding worked, and that Bradford and Bingley shareholders deserved better than having their bank nationalised.
After which there was a silence, as the world held its breath, and Vince actually got very slightly riled, and said he thought he did.
I imagined the listening public were not very sympathetic to Vince's protagonist.
The point here is investing in the stock market is risky as most people should know, and when the government stepped into "save" Bradford and Bingley it was undoubtedly looking to stabilise the financial system in general.
So why should B&B shareholders feel hard done by when they knew risk was involved?
Surely more deserving of our attention are pensioners who have saved for a rainy day and are now finding their costs rising; or members of the public who are losing their jobs in housing firms as they lay off staff.
Even the members of the Moneysavingexpert forum, not usually the most forebearing or altruistic in their outlook, were firmly in the Cable camp after the Today debate.
There is a world of difference between guaranteeing savings and paying out to shareholders, as anyone who is an expert on shares should know.
Meanwhile, Cable continues to consolidate his role as man of the people, who understands where the financial world is coming from.

1 comment:

Stuart White said...

Yes, I really find it hard to understand the moaning from bank shareholders. If the government hadn't stepped in, their assets would be worth diddly squat. Do they thank the government for saving their wealth? No, they moan that it is limiting dividend payouts. There is some kind of elementary ethical blockage here....