Keynes Society: Mr Donald Moore (Chairman of the Morgan Stanley Group, Europe)

The first meeting of the Keynes Society drew a large crowd to listen to Mr Moore give an excellent talk on the causes of the financial crisis, the present risk of a double-dip recession and the likelihood of the breaking-up of the large banking groups. Firstly Mr Moore stated how, among other factors, fraud, greed and lax regulation caused the recession. He also outlined how the collapse of Lehman Brothers was not thought to represent systemic risk to the economy and so, with this in mind, Lehman Brothers was allowed to fail to preserve faith in the capitalist system.

Secondly, Mr Moore analysed the chances of a double-dip recession in the UK, highlighting the difficulties involved with imperfect information giving unreliable figures for growth. He stated that, while the recovery is still weak, a double-dip recession is unlikely, so long as there is growth in demand from the USA and long term unemployment decreases.

Lastly, Mr Moore addressed the proposals to break up the banks. With only the UK still considering it, he concluded that they would not be broken up as there are now enough safety measures in place to sufficiently reduce risk. Furthermore, the logistics of breaking up highly integrated and indivisible banks would be impossible and would only serve to drive banks out of the UK.

The talk was made accessible to the range of year groups and abilities who attended through a clear explanation of the basic principles, and then developed further for the economics students present.

Oscar Hardy (DMG)