Tuesday, November 1, 2011


All my monthly bills were far away
Now it looks as though they're here to stay
Oh I believe in yesterday

Money's not quite what it used to be
There's a default hanging over me
Oh yesterday went suddenly

Why it had to go I don't know
They wouldn't say
They did something wrong
But it's me who has to pay

All the Euro Nations were at play
Now DSK, Lagarde and Trichet
Have made the money fade away

(With apologies to Lennon/McCartney)
It's a bit simplistic, but captures the essence...

And one could ask in the local context why South African banks continue to charge exorbitant fees while paying no interest on credit balances, or why there is such an excessive basis point gap between the prime lending rate and the savings rate (which is nil). Or why the petrol price at the pump continues to grow, despite the ZAR history of holding up against the strong international currencies for the past few years when the dollar price of crude was relatively stable.

And then one might ask just exactly what it is that banks do for you? They certainly don't give you growth on your savings. They don't appear to be a very good risk as a destination for funds, if Euroland is anything to go by. And they're adept at charging fees for everything under the sun. At the end of the day, the funds would actually last longer under the matress. If only we didn't have to have a bank account in order to pay creditors....

But then the government, bank and financial service execs wouldn't get their large annual bonus for the wonderful job they did each year, would they?

And I couldn't bear to have their suffering on my conscience.....

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