Hilary Joffe Columnist

Reserve Bank deputy governor and registrar of banks Kuben Naidoo told the story last week of the time he quoted the well-known line about how banking must be the most regulated sector on the planet – but was sharply corrected by an airline industry person who said banking came second to aviation. It might make an interesting, if arcane debate, but the point is that banking is certainly one of the most heavily regulated industries on the planet, especially in the wake of the 2008-09 global financial crisis. Naidoo, who was launching the annual report of the bank supervision department last week, makes no apologies. The banking sector has the potential to do great damage to people’s lives and the economy, he notes, and it is based on an exceedingly fragile foundation: trust. Making sure banks are managed and funded in a way that ensures they constantly justify that trust is essentially what banking regulators do. The annual report of bank supervision department provides a macrolevel v...

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