12:02, Fri, Nov 6, 2015 | UPDATED: 16:43, Fri, Nov 6, 2015
BRITAIN’S banking industry has failed to learn a single lesson from the catastrophic crash that brought the economy to its knees, a senior industry figure turned whistleblower has warned.
The banking crisis brought the world economy to its knees
Paul Moore believes a new major economic crisis is “on the horizon” and he fired his warning as his explosive new book – the inside story of the collapse of Halifax Bank of Scotland – was published today.
The 57-year-old’s book “Crash, Bank, Wallop” about life inside HBOS is already sending shockwaves through the banking world.
And it comes as the City regulator, the Financial Conduct Authority, is putting the finishing touches to its long-awaited report on the bank’s collapse.
In his book the married father of three reveals speaking out about what had happened inside the failed bank almost destroyed him and his family, pushing him to the brink of suicide.
Paul Moore worked at the heart of the banking crisis in Halifax Bank of Scotland
Moore, a barrister by profession, feels nothing has been learnt from the 2008 financial meltdown and people responsible have not been held to account.
And he claims vested interests are shielding the industry from the necessary restraints required to prevent the next “inevitable financial crisis”.
He said: “People at all levels of society in Britain are fed up and even angry that nothing’s really changed in banking seven years after the worst financial crisis in our history. We are still suffering the consequences of it and want something done about it.
“The majority of bankers are good and honest people and desperately want things to change so they can rebuild the reputation of their industry and be proud of their profession, but we have gone badly astray.
a huge wave a public outrage against bankers followed the crash
The HBOS story is one of catastrophic failures of management, governance and regulatory oversight
Moore said: “The people who caused such serious harm need to be held to account, and that just hasn’t happened.”
He was fired from his post in 2004 shortly after raising serious concerns about what he calls its “relentless” sales culture. He also revealed his concerns over sales tactics surrounding financial products such as PPI.
In 2009 he told a Treasury Select Committee about his boardroom warnings over excessive risk. Former HBOS chief executive James Crosby later resigned as deputy chairman of the Financial Services Authority.
Moore claims that the banks have not learned any lessons
Commission chairman Andrew Tyrie said: “The HBOS story is one of catastrophic failures of management, governance and regulatory oversight.”
Moore has also revealed the deep personal cost to him and his family caused by his whistleblowing. And he is calling for more protection for those prepared to stand up and expose wrongs within organisations.
His campaigning has been punctuated by a drink problem and near suicidal bouts of severe depression.
He believes he was shunned by the banking industry as the result of his actions, leaving him unable to get another job in his chosen profession. It has also taken its toll on family members.
The former HBOS chairman Lord Dennis Stevenson (right)
“I didn’t even realise I was a whistleblower, I thought I was just doing my job. It’s a hard place to be.”
He says only the rock-solid devotion of his wife Maureen and a strengthening Christian faith kept him going.
Recently diagnosed as bipolar, Moore said: “For me and my family, the whole experience has been nothing short of horrendous. It’s had a huge impact on my health and career and my family has suffered terribly.
“At times I’ve been in some very dark places and on hundreds of occasions I’ve wished I was dead. My wife Maureen has been my ‘rock’ and without her I’m certain I wouldn’t be alive today.”
Moore believes there is still not adequate protection for individuals who speak out. He said: “Generally speaking, whistleblowers in this country are ignored, demeaned, dismissed, publicly disgraced and then cast out into the wilderness.”
Moore said whistleblowing policy in the UK failed these people. He said: “That’s clear, because on the whole no one does it. If you blow the whistle it’s quite simple: you never get another job in your industry sector again.”
Moore’s book can be purchased at www.crashbankwallop.co.uk