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Clause 216

Part of Banking Bill – in a Public Bill Committee at 1:15 pm on 30th October 2008.

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Photo of Mark Hoban Mark Hoban Shadow Minister (Treasury) 1:15 pm, 30th October 2008

The Minister makes a very interesting comment and I will come to that later with remarks about the tools that the Bank has to deliver financial stability. Some activities in the financial markets may be acceptable at a low level but as they grow in scale they cause wider risks to the economy. The Governor might have been pessimistic but I think he was right in what he said about relatively low-level activity in a particular area. When things such as credit default options and credit default swaps were first thought about they were seen as valuable financial instruments, but as their usage grew a risk to the economy arose. I think the Governor is being realistic rather than pessimistic when he says that what we might accept as normal at one point might become a threat to financial stability in the long term.