The Dutch Way Of Handling Bankers Bonuses

March 30, 2011 § 2 Comments

*Warning: brief moments of national pride ahead*

Dutch bank ING had to take public money to stay afloat during the financial crisis. Months later, it’s senior team was awarding itself bonuses – even while the bank was still endebted to the taxpayer. Sound familiar?

But the good people of Holland raged on Twitter, and plans for direct action against the bank started to take shape – forcing the CEO to hand back his bonus, and leading to a popular campaign for a high-pay cap, and re-energised moves to tax the financial industry as austerity measures hit.

Ronald Plasterk, a Labour politician, takes the kind of line you’d want to see from more Labour politicians in the UK. He does it in Dutch though, so good luck with that.

Richard Wachman has the full story in The Observer. (Although his best ‘view from a Dutch person’ comes from someone who works in the English-language bookshop…)

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