Patai: Political elite have taken over from financial elite

History

Power has shifted globally to the political elite from the financial elite, and the creativity of “our autocratic government” is contributing to this process, UniCredit Bank Hungary CEO/Hungarian Banking Association (MBSz) chairman Mihály Patai declared at a forum in Budapest on Wednesday.

Patai further illustrated his point with the examples of the German chancellor and the British prime minister, who decide upon the CEO of Commerzbank and the Royal Bank of Scotland, respectively: In the 1990s, Chancellor Kohl had nothing to do to the president of Commerzbank, while Mrs. Merkel now determines this.

The role of regulation has changed in banking, as much stronger and more systematic regulations must be practiced, “which is good,” Patai said, but the creativity of our autocratic government” is also contributing to the global change, putting special pressure on Hungary's banking system.

Patai went on to say that he figured the Hungarian banking system is about halfway through a lean period of six to seven years; 2013, he stated, would be the fourth consecutive year of losses for the Hungarian banking industry which is undergoing a “Darwinian” process similar to that experienced among Japanese banks 15 or so years ago. On the plus side, Patai noted that the banking system is stable and capital ratios are high.

In conclusion and still responding to Prime Minister Viktor Orbán’s call for banks to take responsibility in the forex-based mortgage loan issue, Patai said that “social problems cannot be solved by banks.”

 

– Material by Gergő Racz was used in this story

 

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