NEW: Bank of England Governor Andrew Bailey, is expected to appear before an MP inquiry into the British Steel #pension mis-selling scandal.
Bailey was chief of the FCA when the scandal involving thousands of steelworkers first erupted in 2017. #BSPS
— Josephine Cumbo (@JosephineCumbo) April 29, 2022
It’s a long way from Port Talbot and Scunthorpe to the Bank of England and Andrew Bailey probably wants to forget his responsibility for leading the FCA when steelworkers were left vulnerable to FCA regulated advisers who weren’t behaving as the FCA wanted.
Andrew Bailey has walked away from more than the memories of BSPS, there are many other financial traumas that continue to attend the people the FCA protect because the regulatory system broke down. These include small companies ravaged by RBS, the LCF bondholders and a list of other failures itemised in this document, challenging his appointment to the Bank of England.
If Andrew is, as the FT reports to be re-interviewed , is it on a charge of “gross misconduct” or as a part of the MP’s routine inquiries. Those who side with Andrew Bailey would call this an ad hominem witch-hunt, Gina Miller and many others would call it an attempt to make those who get chosen and paid to lead, to be accountable for their leadership.
Unlike the IFAs who sold bad advice and bad solutions, Andrew Bailey is unlikely to have his assets sanctioned or his livelihood taken away. The worst he can expect is a tarnished reputation and many, such as Gina Miller, would point out that there isn’t much lustre left to tarnish.
So I question the point of revisiting the balls-up made by the former FCA CEO. The Governor of the Bank of England has a cost of living crisis to attend to, a looming recession in the UK and Europe to think about and the ongoing impact of Brexit to think about.
Whatever we may think about the failures of the FCA and Andrew Bailey’s part in them, unless there is a clear advantage to be had in putting the balls of Andrew Bailey on the block, we need to move on. The energies of MPs need to be focussed on getting the restitution to steelworkers fully and in a timely way.
This in no way is a blog in support of the man, it is a practical suggestion . What we do need to consider is why this man became Governor of the Bank of England and therein lies a tale.
Why was i necessary to restructure the original DB pension? If it was such a gold-plated solution, then it should have been unchanged. As usual the analysis here starts at the wrong point in time.
The second stage of the “Advice” The choice of the right funds. using high commission high risk funds for retail customers has no defence. This is where the damage was done
What about the first option to self-manage the cash from the transfer compared with the promised benefits? The original DB promise was not to be honoured and the steel workers were to be offered a similar promise to replace the failed arrangement.
When you look at the number of failed promises in the PPF surely this needs to be a consideration in deciding who to trust with your accumulated pension provisions.
Conveniently no one analyses this instead pundits prefer to blend the stages together and IFA’s are judged against a code of conduct introduced some time after the advice and action were taken
Why don’t we solve this by nationalising the IFA business and get rid of “Guidance” its expensive and has failed the public based on what pension provisions have been achieved. Then get all the new DWP employees to give ADVICE with the pension’s code that the DWP along with the FCA have designed and then all will be well with pensions
I stand with Josephine Cumbo because I don’t think that the current Govenor of the Bank of England is ‘too big to fail’! Perhaps that self-opinionated City attitude is why we are still in somewhat of an economic mess. If Mr Bailey made a serious error at the FCA, then he should, without question, take full responsibility for it or explain why he shouldn’t. Yet to say there’s nothing to be done about it now, strongly implies that all those hard-working people who helped pay his money at the FCA don’t count i.e. the gamekeeper was no better than the poachers. As another old saying goes ‘Graveyards are full of people who thought they were indispensible’.
Meanwhile, back in Whitehall, someone else is fully confident he can do no wrong…!