Quite frankly, the public expect more of banks. For one, they require banks to act responsibly. Indeed, it is obligatory that they do so. How can people place their trust in banks if banks violate that trust and deal recklessly with their life savings. Are banks above the law? Can they do what they want and get away with it? It's beginning to seem like it!
The Storm Financial collapse and the fallout from such must now be a watershed for the banks in this country. It's time they put their house in order. They can make a start by admitting their transgressions in the matter of Storm and pay back the money they have stolen from their former Storm customers.
Let's be honest! Storm's clients were lulled into a false sense of security because certain major banks supported the Storm concept and ASIC had given Storm a clean bill of health. See my letter attached "ASIC's failure to act."
The Storm investors, because they were for the most part elderly and uninitiated in matters of finance, sought out financial professionals to help them plan their futures. These so-called professionals, financial advisers and bankers, saw these investors as soft targets because they had assets that could be exploited for gain. Storm had a gun in its hand but this gun was harmless until the banks willingly supplied the bullets!
These Storm investors only made one mistake but it proved fatal. They trusted in the system!
How were they to know that the schemes concocted between Storm and the banks were anything but safe? How were they to know that the banks and Storm had signed covert agreements between themselves? How were they to know that their share portfolios were not easily accessed in times of crisis? How were they to know that the banks had unlawfully assigned their rights and obligations to Storm? How were they to know that banks cannot be trusted? How were they to know that the professional indemnity insurance touted by Storm was worthless? How were they to know that the various Acts laid down by Parliament to protect consumers were ambiguous and uncertain? How were they to know that the Regulator, namely ASIC, has few teeth to bite those in the financial sector that do the wrong thing? How were they to know that banks can act with impunity when it comes to your money and get away with it? How were they to know that this Government, and ones that have proceeded it, "kow tow" to banks for political gain and therefore will not act against rogue banks because it is not politically expedient. HOW WERE THEY TO KNOW?
Now that the former Storm clients who took out these crippling loans through the banks have been left destitute, the banks are crying innocent. Yet they continue to churn money out of people every day. They get richer and the rest of us get poorer.