Thursday, 15 January 2009


It was the original J.P. Morgan who said “our customer’s belief in our integrity is our most precious possession”.

What price that axiom today?

We are not only going through a crisis of trust with all the institutions, we no longer believe in tried and trusted formulae.

Albert Einstein said “insanity is when you do the same thing over and over again expecting a different result.” Welcome to 2009 Albert because at long last the equals sign is broken. The equals sign used to lead to a result and a smug QED. No longer.

The economists are hopeless – I really believe I’m a better predictor than Anatole Kaletsky of the Times who said “punish savers and make them spend money”. The mathematicians in banks are incompetent. I don’t believe scientists. Politicians can’t help telling lies (Lord Mandelson “a lot of people think the VAT reduction was a good idea”, who, Peter, who?) Primark gets caught using below-minimum-wage-slave-labour.

This is terrible. There is no one left to trust.

And when someone says “my word is my bond” look over their shoulder because, as sure as eggs is eggs, their fingers will be crossed behind their back.

Forget about profit. It’s time to rebuild trust in each other.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Agreed. In the rampant pursuit of a quick buck (or to meet “analysts projections”), there have no doubt been a lot of shortcuts taken and trust compromised.

The question is whether, before we start to re-build trust with each other, we need a round of confessions? The financial industry has now been forced to come clean. And witness Raju’s (Satyam’s Chairman) letter to the world in which he writes of the “tremendous burden...on [his] conscience” of a US$1bn non-existent bank balance. Might PWC, Satyam’s auditors, be the next to step upto the plate? After all, auditors are a primary trust “interface” between an investor and a Company’s management.