October 30, 2014

FT, what Sweden most needs is to throw out its current bank regulatory Pharisees.

Sincerely, it reads like you are trying to convince yourself about feeling some schadenfreuden, with  weak arguments… and even sounding a bit besserwisser reminding us of the importance of looking at real more than at nominal interest rates.

And you even dare to speak of some have “been handed a clear defeat” when you must know that the real economy, the real jury, is still deliberating all around the world, without reaching any kind of clear consensus on what is to be done.

But it is when you argue: “The trade-off between safer debt levels and lost growth was not worth it” that, for the umpteenth time, I need to ask you… is the trade-off between (the illusion of) safer banks and lost growth really worth it?

Sweden is a small country blessed with immense entrepreneurial spirit, so much that even socialists regimes have been wise enough to nurture it. And, in this respect, it is one of those most hurt by that silly risk aversion that has been introduced in its banking system, by means of Basel Committees’ risk-weighted capital/equity requirements… which precisely discriminates against the fair access to bank credit of SMEs and entrepreneurs.

In Swedish churches, psalms pray for “God make us daring”, while some un-elected bureaucrats dedicate themselves to castrate and de-testosterone its banks.

And that is why Sweden also needs, urgently, a psalm that prays for its current bank regulatory Pharisees to be thrown out!