August 18, 2017

Odious debts, odious credits and odious regulations are all yin-yang elements of the financial sector

Sir, M Shepherd, when commenting on Alex Pollock's letter "Sovereign debt has a pretty bad record" August 16 writes that “All too often, debates about defaults on government bonds focus on the borrowers and neglect the lenders.” “The other side of the sovereign debt story”August 18.

Absolutely, and that is why when I write about odious public debt, like that contracted in Venezuela, I always follow it up with one about odious public credit, like those awarded to Venezuela.

But, of course I have to add a point. For instance the immensely excessive public debt in Greece would never have happened had regulators not, for the purpose of setting the capital requirements for banks, assigned Greece a zero percent risk weight.

Those regulators have not been held accountable either, among others because of the network solidarity FT has showed them … in fact they have been promoted to central banks… and our banking system still lives under the distorting thumb of risk weights.