Other banks followed the 'Commercial's example, and thousands of depositors were left penniless, compelled to sell their deposit receipts and their compulsory shares for a fraction of their face value. The Directors of these fiduciary institutions had cross-loaned to each other enormous sums of other people's money, yet while they were pushing other people to the wall, they conspired with each other, met in secret, and wiped off their mutual obligations for a few pence in the pound.
They kept their assets, gave each other clean receipts, and got through the legislature of the State, an Act of Parliament making it an offence for any person or newspaper to give publicity to their scandalous secret 'compositions.' They not only wiped off each other's debts to the institutions they controlled, whose depositors' money they had borrowed, upon whose remaining assets they had foreclosed, but from these foreclosed funds they again 'borrowed' to purchase the scrip and deposit receipts of the thousands they had ruined. Thus these financiers, trusted custodians of other men's money, emerged from the struggle more wealthy than ever.
The message is very clear! You cannot trust banks! If you want further proof of this, read the story of Storm Financial and its association with some of the major banks in this country. Three thousand or so investors (75% of them being retirees) lost three billion dollars because these banks were greedy and uncaring. They continue to make record profits at the expense of the Australian public. It's time to act!
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