| 
  • If you are citizen of an European Union member nation, you may not use this service unless you are at least 16 years old.

  • Files spread between Dropbox, Google Drive, Gmail, Slack, and more? Dokkio, a new product from the PBworks team, integrates and organizes them for you. Try it for free today.

View
 

07 Minutes from 28th May 2012

Page history last edited by Peter Verity 7 years, 8 months ago

 

Date  28/05/2012 Facilitator Andrea 
Time  19:45-21:00 Minutes Peter/Mike/Dermot
Location  Central United Reform Church Type of meeting Meet-up

Attendees

(add yourself if missing)

11 people. A few newcomers, the rest had been to at least one previous meetup

 

Table of Contents

 



 

Introduction

presenter: Peter

 

Peter gave a summary of past and future events

 

1) Conference - "an economy for the 99%" - 19th May

Around 50 people attended the Positive Money talk, and around 20 chose the PM breakout session.

There are pictures and podcasts at http://sheffield.indymedia.org.uk/2012/05/496264.html

 

2) Peace in the Park. Sat 9th June. More volunteers needed with the stall. Martin, Monish and Mike all offered

 

3) Next 2 meetups will be last Monday of June and July at the Quaker Meeting House. 7:45-9:00pm (following on from the Occupy meeting)


What's it all about?!

There was no fixed agenda, we asked for suggestions for agenda items and there was only one - "what's it all about?!" - but it led to a wide-ranging discussion. Highlights below

 

Peter gave a short summary of the Positive Money reforms.

 

What do economists think?

  • Dermot said that 80% of world economists believe in 'neo-liberal' economics, and like to maintain a veil of ignorance over banking.
  • Martin said that he believed economics students were not taught anything about the role of banks in creating money.
  • Martin might be able to set up an Occupy/Positive Money society in the Student Union - even as a 'skeleton' it would allow us to book a seminar room to show the documentary. (*Possibly something to take up in Sept/Oct?*)

 

Where did it all go wrong?

Probably a gradual deterioration since 1844! (http://www.positivemoney.org.uk/how-banks-create-money/short-history-banking-money-creation/ ). There was a gradual increase in credit creation through the 20th century, but the main turning points were

  • 1971-1981 - ending of credit controls, and abolition of mandatory reserve ratios
  • last 20 or so years - advent of computers, ATMs, credit/debit cards etc
  • last decade - 'securitisation' ie. packaging and selling of debt, this has made the otherwise illiquid assets of the banks much more tradeable, allowing them to create more debt-money
  • At one time, bank managers knew their customer base and were able to take calculated risks. Now 'box ticking' selling of debt has replaced 'relationship banking'.
  • It was also noted that Spanish banks did not suffer the same level of deregulation as UK banks, and were regarded as much more responsibly run. Nevertheless they have experienced the same public demand for credit.

 

What would a reformed system look like. Would small businesses be able to borrow?

  • Under the PM proposals there would be a much closer link between lenders and borrowers. Lenders would be offered a range of products in different sectors and with different risks. However this would not guarantee more money to small businesses as interest levels would be set by the market and would still have to take into account the higher risk of unsecured lending. Nevertheless, the increased seigniorage would allow much higher govt. spending on eg. infrastructure and services, and there would be generally lower levels of debt. The "real economy" would benefit hugely.
  • A comparison was made to peer-to-peer banking (eg Zopa and Funding Circle) 

 

Why is so much new debt-money created in the financial sector? What is the incentive to lend?

  • Possibly because securitisation has meant that this is 'secured' lending (ie. the borrowers can use securities as collateral) so it appears relatively safe.
  • [except nobody knows what the real risk is, or how much debt is backed by the same collateral! - PV]
  • Dermot said he could lead a discussion on derivatives (*agenda item July meeting?*) 

 

The international picture

Monish raised the subject of global inequalities due to unfair exchange rate mechanisms, and questioned the role of the IMF and the World Bank. There was insufficient time to debate this, but it was noted that

  • Positive Money reforms could be carried out in the UK independently of other countries
  • There are similar groups working in other countries (USA, New Zealand and Ireland were mentioned) 
  • Iceland was also mentioned - details a bit sketchy
  • You've got to start somewhere (Greece seems an obvious place!)
  • Peter said that "Future Money" by James Robinson has proposals for a radical international currency/taxation/aid regime

 

Where can we find out more?

  • The book "Where does money come from" is the best starting point
  • Mike passed round a copy of the draft 'money reform bill'
  • The 'Move your money' website also got a mention http://www.moveyourmoney.org.uk/

 

IT

There were a few grumbles about our IT systems

  • Dermot thought that the WIKI is confusing to find your way around, also he would like to see some sort of forum or blog
  • Peter said that he thought signing up to the mailing list is clunky, and that he thought we were losing some support as a result. He cited the fact that, of 7 people who left their email addresses at the recent workshop, only 2 had so far accepted the invitation to join.
  • Positive Money in London put all our events on the 'meetup' website with an RSVP. This just duplicates what we are doing so adds no value for our members, and creates unnecessary emails. Peter said it is a waste of time for us - better to deregister! One person thought that by RSVPing on the Meetup site they were booking a seat for the documentary.
  • (*agenda item next meeting?*)

 

 

Comments (0)

You don't have permission to comment on this page.