Straits Times 21 July 2009 : Fiasco Resolved Fairly
Now I get a better picture of what PAP leaders think fairness is. Sending victims of mis-selling one-by-one back to file complaints with the banks so that the bank get to decide who and what amount to compensate, to them, is a fair process. Although financial institutions have violated guidelines and have been banned from selling these products, most compensated investors received only 10-30% of their money and many have not been compensated. DBS compensated only $7.6M[Link] to investors who lost $103M[Link] from High Notes 5 - this is the govt's idea of fairness and justice ....yes it is only fair that we pay these ministers millions to do so much for ordinary Singaporeans.We are in a country that just employed 500 officers to catch and fine people for eating sweets on MRT trains because there is a remote possibility that the sweet may fall out of the person's mouth and dirty the train so it is very strange to hear that our financial regulator does not have the capacity to ensure that financial products are fit for sale and make sure that our financial institutions do not mis-sell them and cause ordinary Singaporeans to lose their lifesavings. Sweets are not allowed on the MRT, but crappy financial products that rarely perform as advertised are allowed. We should not ban these FIs from selling these products for 9 months or 12 months, they should be banned forever. These structured products allow banks to make plenty in fees and commissions because the complex structure help to hide these. There is little benefit for investors in these products. We ban sweets on MRT trains and chewing gum but allow our banks to sell structured products......oh this country is so well run and ministers are paid millions to tell us "MAS can't do much"....don't want or can't?
At a time when political leadership is needed to bring about a equitable resolution, they choose to be absent. This crisis taught us that greedy bankers and corporations know the law and regulation well enough not to break them. It takes real leadership to go investigate what has happened, make painful changes and answer to the people who lost their lifesavings through no fault of their own. This single fiasco taught us about what is really important to the PAP leaders and it is not fairness or the well being of ordinary Singaporeans who became victims.....Lim Hng Kiang said it best himself and he said it honestly:
"The process has not been overly legalistic and is not subject to political pressure. This way we serve the interests of all parties, and also serve the wider public interest of growing Singapore’s reputation as a credible and reliable international financial centre" - Minister Lim Hng Kiang...
I was wondering how we "grow our reputation" by giving small investors so little protection.... certainly our reputation in the eyes of investors will be harmed......I thought about for a while I think Minister Lim is saying we grow our reputation among the big global banks that they can come here to do business and for what ever reason they overlook the regulation of our little state and the citizens are hurt because of it, the punishment will not undermine their bottomline too much. I'm sure many banks will be lining up for licenses to provide services ...to sell more structured products and issue more credit cards to ordinary Singaporeans. The govt now serves the interests of "all parties", ordinary Singaporeans being a small part of this "all parties" thingy - look at it this way : Singapore is now Singapore Inc a corporation with many stake holders and like I've said in my previous posts, the interests of the PAP govt is now diversified among the many stake holders, ordinary Singaporeans being one of the many stake holders and are not the only primary interest of the PAP govt ....and the resolution of this minibond fiasco says it all.