January 30, 2012
Following the announcement on the amount awarded to RBS's Chief Executive, Stephen Hester, as a bonus, Mark has been commenting on the matter on a range of media outlets including Radio Five Live, Sky News, Radio 4 and Jeremy Vine's Radio 2 show. He wrote today the following article for prominent political website, ConservativeHome.As MP for the City, I have never slavishly defended the level of rewards in financial services which are often disproportionate and, in the current climate of austerity, seen to many as ludicrously out of balance (click here). Nevertheless....
January 24, 2012
Like most Conservative MPs, only a few years ago I cannot imagine that I would have been open minded to the notion of government interference in the remuneration of privately owned companies. However, Vince Cable announced to parliament yesterday afternoon that the coalition government will rapidly move towards legislating to give shareholders control over the ‘excesses of capitalism’ and clamp down on the ‘rewards for failure’. Perhaps more than any other, my own constituency, the Cities of London and Westminster, benefited from the...
January 23, 2012
The following article by Mark appeared in today's Telegraph: Does it really matter if Sir Fred becomes plain Mr Goodwin again? Watching senior political leaders this week falling over themselves in casting to the winds the fate of the disgraced former Royal Bank of Scotland Chief Executive you could be excused for thinking that no issue in public life was more critical. Don’t be fooled by the grandstanding. Messrs Cameron, Clegg and Miliband know in their hearts that the dispute over the award of a knighthood to an erstwhile Master of the Financial Services Universe...
December 7, 2011
So here we go again! Yet another ‘last chance saloon’ Eurozone crisis conference. Maybe, just maybe, this Friday’s summit will be the game changer that financial markets so earnestly desire. In truth, I am still not convinced, in spite of coverage to the contrary, that Angela Merkel has the domestic political capital to drive forward fiscal union. Her electors may warm to the imposition of Germanic economic discipline on southern Europe, but the inflationary consequences of ECB money-printing provide...
December 2, 2011
Recently at lunch in my constituency, I found myself seated next to a native partner from one of the two Chinese law firms now operating in London. During our conversation I made some passing reference to the ‘global economic downturn’. This was greeted with a wry smile. ‘Back home’, he said, ‘we call it the North Atlantic recession’. What we so easily forget amidst the West’s doom and gloom – where the Euro teeters...
November 28, 2011
The following article was written by Mark for today's Telegraph: It was not supposed to be like this. Only twelve months ago we were assured that the government’s spending plans for the entire parliament had been conclusively settled. Instead George Osborne will attempt with tomorrow’s Autumn Statement to kick-start UK economic growth beyond its recent anaemic levels. Not that the Chancellor will admit his admirable strategy for deficit reduction has already been blown off course. But it has – as confirmed by his Downing Street neighbour last week...
November 14, 2011
The following article by Mark was published in this morning's City AM: Without stable financial markets, there is little hope for the sustained growth so essential for economic recovery. The UK economy is a global leader in the financial services sector but this leaves it especially prone to the adverse impact of uncertainty on global financial markets. No UK taxpayer stands by while unimaginably large sums or guarantees go to bail out the banking system with any sense of satisfaction. Indeed, our own Prime Minister and chancellor have repeatedly...
November 11, 2011
Mark was asked to write the following article for Accountancy Age about the importance of the City's links to offshore financial centres : As the world has sought to understand the cause of the global financial crisis, international financial centres (IFCs) have naturally found themselves under fire. Taking many of the bullets have been smaller IFCs whose offshore jurisdictions have raised the eyebrow of suspicion. Described as tax havens for avaricious bankers and secrecy jurisdictions for shady figures...
November 2, 2011
My constituency contains in Soho and the West End the spiritual home of Britain’s globally competitive creative sector. Creative industries offer one of the great white hopes for economic growth but all is not well for some of its players. Two years ago I was contacted by Oli Hyatt of Blue Zoo, an animation company with offices within the constituency, as he was deeply concerned about the future of the UK animation industry. Oli has since been tireless in his campaign to keep animation work on these shores and he helped set up Animation UK in a bid ...
October 21, 2011
The road network and public debt - on the face of it, two unrelated topics. One is an under-resourced, often ignored asset, vital to the social and economic well-being of the nation, as much of an essential service as other utilities such as the water, power and communications industries. Public debt meanwhile rises inexorably especially taking account of pensions and PFI liabilities – all in all it is potentially catastrophic to the UK’s future prosperity.