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DispatchesUndercover Mosque title

How The Banks Bet Your Money

Broadcast: Monday 18 February 2008 08:00 PM

A global credit crunch has put Britain's banks in a crisis that threatens the future of jobs and businesses and may even trigger a wholesale recession.

How The Banks Bet Your Money

A global credit crunch has put Britain's banks in a crisis that threatens the future of jobs and businesses and may even trigger a wholesale recession.

In this edition of Dispatches, private equity financier Jon Moulton delivers a stinging rebuke to the banks for causing this financial meltdown and explains why the British taxpayer will now pay the price.

America has been hit hard by the sub-prime crisis. The social cost of financial failure has been enormous. An epidemic of home repossessions has left thousands of houses abandoned and boarded-up: whole suburbs are falling into disrepair and dereliction.

Financial institutions in America and in Britain had poured billions into investments backed by these mortgages. As more and more people have defaulted on their mortgage repayments, financial markets have collapsed, causing a crisis that has rippled across the Atlantic, sending the City of London into turmoil and pulling the plug on one now infamous British bank.

The question is: will it stop there? This is a story about the destructive power of finance: what happens when banks are driven by short-termism; when bankers are rewarded with vast bonuses, free to operate under inadequate regulatory supervision, and with the complicity of a government too in awe of big business to step in.

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