A controversial article published in The Guardian has rekindled the debate about ethical banking. Penned by Lisa Bachelor, it sought to identify fresh possibilities for those dissatisfied with the traditional banking system and its penchant for scandals.
Revelations of the report
There certainly were plenty of reasons for customers to voice their malcontent, according to Bachelor. Only in July of this year, top executives at Europe's leading bank HSBC had faced painful interrogations by US senators after it had become public that the company had been involved in money-laundering activities for, among others, drug trafficking organisations, terrorist groups and rogue states.
Although several of the executives involved had eventually openly apologised, with HSBC's long-standing head of compliance eventually resigning and the multinational announcing that incisive reforms had been put into place in a bid of preventing similar occurrences from ever happening again in the future, the revelations had doubtlessly fueled the suspicion that banks were immoral from the outset and could not be trusted. In her treatise, Bachelor offered up a variety of potential alternatives to main street bank – but at the same time, she also opened up a fierce controversy about their validity.
Students should make sure to prepare themselves for a rough financial future, eccount money's Will Thomas has said. His comments were part of a passionately led debate about the effects of Lord Brown's plans for the reform of higher education, which increasingly replaced talent with the cool, hard logic of the market.
Result of education reform
While this could simply be interpreted as a sign of the times in theory, Peter Scott, in an article for the Guardian, argued that Brown's neoliberal "paradigm shift" clearly wasn't working in practise. Scott identified various problems, including:
An ongoing reduction in the number of student applications due to the rise in student fees and bleak post-study job opportunities;
A lack of tangible competition among universities;
An oversupply of state intervention.
The reasons for this were twofold, according to Scott: A political deadlock on the one hand. And the failure of the supposedly free markets to actually come up with financially sound solutions on the other. The combination of these elements made for an extremely dangerous cocktail, according to Thomas:
"Our country vitally depends on the creativity and mindpower of a new generation of students. Most of all, however, it depends on them being positive and confident about their prospects on the labour market. We need to do everything in our power to provide them with the tools required to arrive at that confidence."
To many people, an eccount is simply a great way of participating in banking again. To others, it is an extremely useful tool to get out of debt and stabilise their budget. To yet others, it means getting access to mobile banking facilities and being able to take care of their banking on the move. All of these are perfectly sensible reasons, but what most people don't know is that an eccount is even more than that and can actually help you in setting realistic financial targets for yourself. How does it work? Allow us to show you ...