Stock exchanges in Britain and the USA have been on the slide over the past few days. The reason is not hard to seek. The FTSE has been spooked by bank shares collapsing. Barclays, for instance, saw 25% of its share price shaved off in one hour last Friday (16.01.09). This was the day after the bank announced 2,100 job losses.
It’s not just in the UK: Citigroup has been quaking and Bank of America has been shaking. That’s why the government is getting ready to throw another $350 billion at them. Oh, joy. When will it stop? The answer, of course, is after the bosses and bankster frauds pawn their bad paper off on the taxpayers, if then.
The current slide started just after the government lifted its ban on short selling –speculators betting on shares going down. As we pointed out when the ban was introduced three months ago, the government can’t pass laws against capitalists betting on corporate failure. But it was really stupid to lift the ban when banks were in such a fragile state. In the panic–stricken atmosphere of last October, or last week, speculators can make things happen. By spreading rumours, short sellers can cause share prices to collapse. In effect this is like shouting ‘fire’ in a crowded theatre, going back later on and looting the bodies of those trampled to death.
Has the ‘get rich quick’ mentality died yet? It sure doesn’t look like it. Speculators helped to run the economy into the ground. Now, they’re back to pick at the bones. Unfortunately, the poor, working and middle classes are the bones.
Last week the first bad news came from across the pond. Citigroup shares fell by 23% earlier in the week. Citigroup, Bank of America and Merrill Lynch announced that together they had lost a record $25bn in just 3 months. Meanwhile Bank of America and Merrill Lynch have also been leaking $11m per hour in losses. They too have their hand out to the American taxpayer – they are looking for another $20bn injection – more than the price of a cup of tea.
Read the rest. Cry if it’s what will help, but realize that the bosses and bankster frauds are more important to the government than the vast majority of the citizenry. Brooks has a clear plan, if we should choose to follow it;
The alternative is clear. Ernst and Young report that the economy is now in freefall, confronting its sharpest decline since 1931. The only way to stop the slide and offer everyone a job, a job which could lift living standards all round, is to take over the banks together with the big manufacturing companies and run society on socialist lines.
De facto nationalization has already occurred. Perhaps it is best if we set up our banking system along the lines of public utilities or ever not-for-profit ventures. The days of ‘high-rolling’ banking need to come to an end for the good of not only the US and British economies, but for the world economy as well.