Thursday, 18 September 2008
HBOS bank takeover by Lloyds TSB and its effects
By: Murdoch MacDonald
THE Scottish Parliament today heard First Minister Alex Salmond promise to “strain every sinew and fight to the last” to protect bank jobs and decision-making functions within the Scottish economy in the wake of the takeover of Halifax Bank of Scotland (HBOS) by Lloyds TSB.
At First Minister’s Question Time in the Holyrood chamber, the First Minister (pictured above) said there were 7,000 Lloyds TSB employees in Scotland and 17,000 HBOS staff.
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Mr Salmond had spoken to both unions and banks and had called an emergency meeting of the Finance Services Industry Advisory Board for next Tuesday to discuss the situation.
Mr Salmond told MSPs: “We have to ask did this necessarily have to happen? Was it inevitable that a 300 year-old institution in Scotland, and all it means to the Scottish economy, should be laid low in the manner it is? I do not believe it had to happen. I believe it is a soundly based institution. Only yesterday the Financial Services Authority described it in these terms.
“It was laid low by the actions of speculators in the money markets, and action must be taken against them. Other financial institutions will be targeted unless restraints are made to short selling. Short selling is when people enter into selling shares they have absolutely no title to whatsoever, and do it with the aim of making a speculative profit over other people’s misery.
“I understand Russia has outlawed it, and that America has suspended it. I would urge our financial authorities to follow suit.”
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