The UK Trades Union Congress calls for British bank cheats to be imprisoned after a series of banking scandals.
The UK Trades Union Congress (TUC) has urged the Coalition government to hold a public Leveson- style inquiry into the country’s banking system, calling for bank cheats to face prison sentences.
“Britain’s banking system is out of control. We are now paying a heavy price for the decades when banks and finance persuaded politicians that they were the new engines of growth,” said TUC General secretary Brendan Barber.
On June 27, the US and British regulators imposed fines on Barclays Bank for manipulating the key interest rate index, the London Interbank Offered Rate (LIBOR), to its advantage between 2005 and 2009.
After that British Treasury chief George Osborne announced that two more British banks including HSBC and Royal Bank of Scotland are subjects of investigation for the alleged financial market manipulation that led to fines of £290 million against Barclays.
In a statement to MPs on Thursday June 28, Osborne said that the two British banks along with Switzerland's UBS and US bank Citigroup are also being probed for allegedly providing false figures on key interest rates upon which mortgages and consumer loans are priced.
“But the worst that ever seems to happen to top bankers is that they have to give up their bonus while they claim they did not know what was going on in the companies they run,” Barber said.
“It’s time for a fresh start for our finance sector that makes banking a utility that serves the rest of the economy, and ensures bank cheats face prison.”
Following Labour leader Ed Miliband’s call for a public inquiry into the "institutional corruption" of the banking industry, a spokeswoman for Downing Street said the review of the inter-bank lending rate would be independent.