Singapore needs Paul Volcker
Dr Volcker, the former Fed Chairman, is in town. Hopefully the govt can bring him on board in some kind of advisory role to curb the madness we have been sucked into. Volcker is famed for his Volcker Rule which forbids proprietary trading and speculations by banks in the financial market. His fear of the menace created by reckless banks which came true during the financial and subprime mortgage crisis has led to the US curbing proprietary trading by banks. His experience on the ground is invaluable. The conflict of interest and unfair advantages of banks in trading and speculation is obvious but blind to those who see short term gains. Singapore has adopted this practice of allowing banks to be thickly involved in proprietary trading or with trading arms as an extension of the banks to dabble in more exciting adventures in the wider financial jungle. The only way to throw out such voyeurism which has ruined the American finance industry is to have a giant like Volcker to tell the super talents that they are going down a slippery slope of no return. There is still time to unwind the mess before the whole financial industry got sucked into the abyss and spin into thin air. The other main fear of the financial industry is the ingenious and crooked ways of writing pieces of papers for trading. Derivative trading is not much different from playing monopoly when everything is worthless and trading with worthless money. A return to real value, assets and industry is the key to return sanity to the intoxicated financial market. We really need a heavy dosage of Volcker wisdom, prudence and thrift policies. Would the super talents listen or are they too high in the clouds and not able to see the mess that the industry is in?