The Libor scandal involving U.K.-based Barclays bank is just the latest illustration of greed in the financial sector, says Bill Moyers.
Makes you wonder about all those big time bankers at the other end of the scale – the ones who came running to the government and taxpayers for bailouts worth hundreds of billions of dollars, then scooped up big bonuses and perks for themselves and went back to business as usual. And what a business! You’ve surely been hearing about the newest scandal in banking centering on Barclays Bank in London and something called Libor.
That stands for London Interbank Offered Rate and it involves a group of bankers who set a daily interest rate affecting trillions of dollars of transactions around the world. Your home mortgage, your college debt, your credit card fees—these could have been affected by Libor.
It turns out some of those insiders were manipulating the index for their own gain, to make their bank look better off during the financial crisis, to lower their borrowing cost and raise their profits. Picking our pockets, lining theirs. “The Economist” magazine describes it as “the rotten heart of finance.”