This week’s blogs: rollercoaster ride

The World Economic Forum was in reflective mood at its annual gathering in
Davos in January.

Our conversations ­ industry leaders and policymakers alike ­ were about the
causes of the current financial crisis.

Everyone had their own analysis of the past. But paralysis on past mistakes
is the last thing we need now.

This recession doesn’t mean capitalism has failed. But it does mean it needs
to change. A new age of responsible capitalism will put ethical business
behaviour, accountability and transparency at its heart.

Taking a positive agenda to policymakers will help avoid knee-jerk
over-regulation based on past

Instead, it will focus attention on building a framework of financial
regulation that restores trust in capitalism for the future.

Michael Izza, chief executive, ICAEW

Someone on the radio said the other day that the crisis was a case of swings
and roundabouts. I think the saying goes, what you lose on the swings, you gain
on the roundabouts. Although I’m not sure I really understand what that’s all
about ­ I thought you paid to ride on both. But wait, yes I do ­ I’m just not
that used to thinking like an accountant yet.

The saying makes sense if you’re the one running the fairground. If your
customers aren’t riding the swings, they’ll be paying to ride the roundabouts
instead. Mystery solved.

Clearly all that revision has sharpened my brain. Speaking of which… better
get back to the books.

Daniel Chown, CA student at PKF

Having worked shoulder-to-shoulder with Gordon Brown in ‘rescuing the world’,
Alistair Darling now has his sites set on Switzerland. I missed his recent
Observer interview but Accountancy Age’s tax newsletter says Darling
has called on Switzerland to end its ‘veil of secrecy’.

Next month, Gordon Brown will insist that bears stop pooing in the woods and
David Milliband will challenge the Catholic church to elect popes from other

‘It’s one of the things Switzerland has got to address. If it wants to be
part of the international community, it’s got to be open,’ Darling said.

Correct me if I’m wrong, but hasn’t Switzerland spent many decades, if not
centuries not being part of the international community ­ and very successfully

Yet more pointless, soundbite politics, contributing to greenhouse gas

A blog from Financial Director

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