The author has been described by News Ltd as an "iconoclast", "Svengali", a pollie's "economist muse", and "pungently accurate". Fairfax says he is a "Renaissance man" and "one of Australia’s most respected analysts." Stephen Koukoulas concludes that he is "85% right", and "would make a great Opposition leader." Terry McCrann claims the author thinks "‘nuance’ is a trendy village in the south of France", but can be "scintillating" when he thinks "clearly". The ACTU reckons he’s "an enigma wrapped in a Bloomberg terminal, wrapped in some apparently well-honed abs."

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

APRA brings out the tommy machine gun

Classic quotes, finally, from APRA, as reported by Banking Day:

"The head of policy and research at APRA, Charles Littrell, has warned Australia’s political leaders they need to support aggressive prudential supervision...[T]he aggressive intervention necessary to avoid or minimise crises would be “impossible without broad public sector support, most of all from politicians across the political spectrum.”

“Show me a country where the politicians listen to bankers more than they listen to regulators,” he said, “[and] I will show you a country which is guaranteed to have a banking crisis.”

Littrell suggested that the right approach to avoiding financial crises was “something like the discipline practised by non-drinking alcoholics”. Regulators must keep repeating that “we are not going to become light-touch regulators,” he said...

He also warned that allowing finance ministries to promote finance industry development too often led to laxity among banks. This was “the most common prelude to a financial crisis”, he said."