Brown Pressed over ?1.1 Trillion Savers Guarantee; Fuelling Hopes: Traders in the Crude Oil Futures Pit at the New York Mercantile Exchange Today Where Prices Swung Back as Investors Cautiously Returned to the Market amid Optimism over the Banks Bail-Out Plan

The Evening Standard (London, England), October 1, 2008 | Go to article overview

Brown Pressed over ?1.1 Trillion Savers Guarantee; Fuelling Hopes: Traders in the Crude Oil Futures Pit at the New York Mercantile Exchange Today Where Prices Swung Back as Investors Cautiously Returned to the Market amid Optimism over the Banks Bail-Out Plan


Byline: JONATHAN PRYNN, NICK GOODWAY

GORDON BROWN was under growing pressure today to clarify whether he would offer a ?1.1 trillion safety-net for all savers.

The sense of uncertainty over the Government's response to the financial crisis came after Irish ministers announced a blanket guarantee scheme for its savers yesterday.

There were signs today that the French government is considering a similar move to reassure the public that their money is safe and prevent a "run on the banking system".

The Prime Minister has been careful not to rule out a blanket guarantee of taxpayers' bank deposits in Britain.

But leading bankers want Mr Brown who says he will do "whatever it takes" to stabilise the financial system to clear up the confusion swiftly.

Economists said the Government would hold back a 100 per cent guarantee to act as a trump card if the crisis threatens to run out of control.

It has already said the guarantee on savings will be raised from ?35,000 to ?50,000 shortly but not exactly when.

Bankers say they were left frustrated by a conference call with the Chancellor late last night as he tried to examine new options to solve the crisis.

The chief executives of Barclays, Lloyds TSB, Royal Bank of Scotland, HBOS and HSBC were among those patched into the call alongside Alistair Darling and Treasury officials.

One person who was closely involved said: "It was an intensely frustrating conversation and frankly most of the bankers were unimpressed by what they were hearing. …

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Brown Pressed over ?1.1 Trillion Savers Guarantee; Fuelling Hopes: Traders in the Crude Oil Futures Pit at the New York Mercantile Exchange Today Where Prices Swung Back as Investors Cautiously Returned to the Market amid Optimism over the Banks Bail-Out Plan
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