Barclays bonuses: Heads they win, tails they win
Barclays have paid out £2.7 billion in bonuses, after making pre-tax profits of £11.6 billion in 2009. These super-profits show that banks win in both good times and bad.
Paying huge bonuses when people are still losing their jobs and business cannot get the loans they need because of a crash made in the finance sector goes against every concept of fairness.
It’s just not good enough for Barclays to say that they didn’t receive direct aid. All the banks have gained because it’s now clear that whatever they do the state will bail them out. Policies designed to help banks rebuild their balance sheets have just been used to pay bonuses.
That is why the campaign for the Robin Hood Tax – a tiny transactions tax on the billions of pounds that banks whizz round the finance system every day – has gained such strong support.