Last week former Taoiseach and President of IFSC Ireland, John Bruton, said that the banking industry needed "to focus on ethics rather than regulation". As someone who strongly supports the idea of ethical codes and a more central role for ethics in business, I found this remark and the casual way it was accepted unhelpful on many levels. Ethics are not an alternative to regulation; rather regulation is needed to support ethical behaviour.
Is a euro in a Cypriot bank, locked down by withdrawal limits and capital controls, the same as a euro in an Irish or French bank? Is a euro sitting in, say, a payroll account in Laiki with a balance of more than €100,000 (and subject to an unspecified “haircut” on Thursday) the same an “Irish euro”?
Professor Georges Enderle from the University of Notre Dame has been giving a series of lectures this week at the Kemmy Business School, University of Limerick. One of his most interesting ideas is around the purpose of business, which he sees as the creation of wealth. So far, so Friedman. The cool bit is how he defines wealth. By Sheila Killian.