Capitalism crisis: Carney issues warning over City culture

The Governor of the Bank of England Mark Carney has issued a stark warning over the future of capitalist society, saying that bankers have been operating a “heads I win, tails you lose” culture and need to become more responsible.

Carney said he aimed to build “a more trustworthy” capitalism, but added that the current system was “amplifying the rewards of the superstar”.

The Inclusive Capitalism conference in London, organised by Lynn Forester de Rothschild, and attended by delegates including Bill Clinton and Christine Lagarde, debated the role of capitalism in the 21st century.

Carney said that financial sector excesses in the build-up to the recession had eroded trust in fair capitalism and risked a breakdown of the social contract.

“Just as any revolution eats its children, unchecked market fundamentalism can devour the social capital essential for the long-term dynamism of capitalism itself. To counteract this tendency, individuals and their firms must have a sense of their responsibilities for the broader system,” Carney said.

The Governor outlined his vision for a fairer system, saying that those who don’t play by the rules should face “professional ostracism”.

He said: “Consideration should be given to developing principles of fair markets, codes of conduct for specific markets, and even regulatory obligations within this framework. There should be clear consequences including professional ostracism for failing to meet these standards.”

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