HSBC to axe 40 in fund administration

ANOTHER 40 finance sector jobs are set to go in Guernsey.

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ANOTHER 40 finance sector jobs are set to go in Guernsey.

HSBC Securities Services announced the cuts in its fund administration arm as it outsourced some business to Ireland and Luxembourg.

The move followed news that 19 jobs are to go at Clydesdale Bank International over the course of the next 12 months, the closure of Jessops in the Pollet and uncertainty about the future of HMV and Blockbuster.

HSBC confirmed yesterday that it was restructuring its fund administration business, although it did not confirm job losses or numbers.

It denied that HSBC Securities Services was pulling out of the island altogether – contrary to initial reports – and said it would continue to serve local clients.

Comments for: "HSBC to axe 40 in fund administration"

SaintsBay

Comments please St Gavin and Alistair The Complacent.

Is the new runway to assist The Golden Goose get airbourne ?

jerseynige

In Jersey we'd have P.Ozouf telling us how wonderful things are going and how this would lead to new opportunities and employment.

TED

I ate the Golden Goose for Christmas!!!

guernseysim

i cant wait to see the back of off shore banking .i was born in guernsey so where my parents and so on down the line . the off shore banking is built on greed gone are the days when you work hard to get by to feed and clothe you family have a house the size your family need . in guernsey now it is a case of who can get the most money to show off with a house 10 times the size thay need a car that is to big or fast for island or many cars to show off guersey people where lucky to live in a place we where born in and the greedy people of other places came and spoilt it and we let it . one day i hope and pray thay will all leave and go and spoil some where else . and dont come back and say guernsey would not been so well off with out it . but real guernsey people are workers and would of got by very well with out it

PS

@guernseysim

You really need to get with the real world. If the finance sector was to leave, think of the knockon effect it would have with businesses linked.

Maybe it would not effect you, but think of your family memebers it would.

Not Green

Unfortunately your post just comes across as being a mixture of sour grapes and envy. Perhaps you have worked hard for what you have, but so do the bank workers - who incidentally keep a lot of the so called Real Guernsey Workers in the style that they have become accustomed to, i.e. life on the dole. But I am confident that a hard worker like yourself will not suffer once the banks leave; there are plenty of jobs around if you are keen - but I honestly don't see how you think Guernsey will improve by the finance industry upsticking and going to Ireland or wherever they are headed. Please enlighten us.

Hartley

I'm sure an entire generation of enthusiastic young people doing their A-levels just can't WAIT to get in those greenhouses.

TED

Believe me most Growers would not touch local students with a barge pole. They have a poor work ethic, can't do math or spell without tech help and would not last a day. I have also worked with finance workers doing charity manual work one word summed them up useless!!

Jeff

Ted - I take what you say and I have experience of this first hand having worked ‘tech’ for a local grower, they have hardly any applications from locals and those that do typically don’t work out as the job is long and hard and does not pay highly enough in their opinion.

I despair with some of the young people in this island and dread to think of the poor job/life prospects they will have if they don’t make some changes, but at the same time there are students that I believe would do a fantastic job in the growing industry if they wanted.

As a young, 100% locally born and bred finance worker, I find your view on finance workers very insulting and am certain you would take issue with me if I turned around and started bleating on about tradies or Civil Servants just standing around drinking coffee and doing 10 minutes work every hour - you would (quite rightly) take offence!

When I go to one particular building supply firm in the north of the island during my lunch hour, if I turn up in my work suit and tie I will be ignored and generally treated like an idiot – if I change into my jeans and hoodie then I’m instantly one of ‘the lads’ and they’ll be up for some banter, give me the time of day and even give me discount without me asking. Is this typical of that side of the industry..... ?

It’s about time society stops criticising other parts of society and find a way to get on and move forward, together. As much as the guy gets criticised I do think Deputy Stewart has some good ideas and is worth listening to with regards to the islands future – after chatting to him at length on this subject I would have to say I haven’t heard any better plans to date (ICT etc).

Whether we like it or not, finance IS here for now – the trades and Civil Servants absolutely depend on finance and finance depends on them. When finance goes (and it will to an extent at some point) the island is going to have to be prepared in good time – sink or swim. Slating the finance industry gets no one anywhere. Either put up or shut up. Either you are part of the solution or part of the problem quite frankly.

Oh, as a ‘useless’ finance worker I would just like to say that both myself and Mrs. Jeff do a lot of charity and volunteer work. Just because my skill isn’t building a wall or wiring electrics but IT infrastructure and accounting, that hasn’t ever led to me being called useless!

TED

To clarify I am not saying that finance workers are useless in their field but my experience with them involving practical tasks left a lot to be desired. Let us just hope that there is not the great exodus of finance as has been widely predicted as these people may struggle to adapt if they need to use anything else but a keyboard.

Phil

Here's something to consider Ted, do you think you could perform the tasks of (say) an accountant better than they could dig a hole or paint a wall?

Sick_of_Sycophants

...and let's not forget St Kev offering them 'support', Saints B...;)

One week, two banks. Rest assured, however, that all those terrible rumours about finance departing on a slow boat to elsewhere remain entirely untrue, and that Father Christmas is alive and well and living in the Bahamas.

Ed

Another pat on the back for commerce and employment department.

Keep kidding yourselves you know what you are doing...

Any policy documents likely to come out soon? If ever?

Island Wide Voting

Seems the FTP is working everywhere except in the States

WoodfortheTrees

The average person in the street is clearly worried by the continuing restructuring of businesses and the resulting job losses.

What's more worrying is that our C&E Deputy, Kevin Stewart believes this is because of issues specific to HSBC.

Err...wake up Mr Stewart and get your head out of the sand. While you're at it...knudge the other Deputies also with you.

The issues surrounding these business restructuring/relocating is much more general and specific to the island economy than you clearly think.

The world has moved on. There are equally skilled and less expensive work forces elsewhere.

I work in the Finance Industry and there will be more to come.

More Local Than You

Fully agree.

I too work in the finance industry and Guernsey isn't competitive for all the back office work (i.e. a fair chunk of what is done here).

The future isn't bright.

Jones

Wages much cheaper elsewhere, of course it's more cost effective to move the work to a cheaper duristiction. With modern communications, just like the fate of local retailing and even online movie streaming the world is now truly connected and the only way to survive is either remain competitive or offer something unique.

The major costs to the finance industry are housing the staff and paying the wages, I cannot see this changing any time soon.

Still Guernsey is very much a great place to live and work and I am sure new opportunities will avail themselves ...

Zero 10 seems an old Turkey now.

Jeff

The point with HSBC is the type of work that is moving out of the island - anyone that is vaguely familiar with finance or has even read local/national papers will know that funds have had a torrid time over the past few years.

At the moment there are plenty of cash-rich clients about but nobody wants to make a move out of cash as there is so much uncertainty in structured products and even where to place deposits.

Yes there will be a lot of job losses to come I'm sure but this will come mainly from the bigger international corporate institutions I am certain.

A company a few doors up from HSBC moved a number of jobs to Jersey a few years ago (I know this first hand as I nearly took a job that ended up being moved to Jersey 4 weeks later), it wasn't in the Press. This sort of thing does happen quite a lot, just now rather than relocating staff or finding them alternative positions in the company, businesses are choosing redundancy to mitigate long term costs.

I believe Guernsey is still a very competitive place to do business and as long as we are needed nationally (The City) and internationally, we will be around for a while yet.

GM

Jeff

And there is about to be a significant shift from bonds into equities according to what the pension fund mnagers are saying, which will drive up equity prices and no doubt kickstart the launch of a few new funds whicyh have been mothballed because of the difficulty of raising funds for investment in the past couple of years.

Its not all doom and gloom on the funds front if you take a 12-month view.

veridiqueVeronique

Here we go again and tomorrows headlines will be support available for those sacked by HSBC, funny how those headlines failed to materialise after the news of job losses at HMV, Blockbusters and Jessops, actually thinking about it not so surprising when you witness the simpering, fawning and grovelling behaviour of our politicians who worship at the alter of the finance industry and who would sell their souls to appease that industry. All the while those who sit at the top of said industry rub their hands with glee and smirk at the politicians who are so willing to bend over backwards to accommodate their every whim while planning their exit. In the last election we all thought that the new crop of deputies would bring about a new beginning how wrong we all were.

Dave haslam

We have spent so long, and bent over so many times we no longer have an easy route out.

Backchat

Shame its true!

PB FALLA

Another step towards reality and THE GOOD OLD DAYS

guernseysim

like i said true Guernsey people are workers and will sort them selfs out . when all the greedy people are gone to rub some other land guernsey people will clean up the mess that as been left and get on with life

bcb

I know plenty of "true Guernsey people" who are nothing but scrounging layabouts and there are many "true Guernsey people" who are greedy too.

But you are right about the greed that in cases hasen`t done us any favours but just remember there are Guernsey people who have taken full advantage of this.

veridique

I am assuming that from your disparaging remarks about true locals that you are both a non local and work in the finance industry, please correct me if I am wrong. This being the case it must be so difficult for you to live amongst a local populous of greedy, scrounging layabouts, in fact in order to relieve your suffering might I suggest that you take the next plane out of our island, once the snow has cleared!

bcb

It would be a good idea if you actually took some time to read what i am saying instead of wading in and making a fool of yourself.

I will try again just for you as you don`t seem to understand, in fact i will ask you some questions and i bet you will have to answer yes to them all or you may just choose to lie.

Do you think there aren`t any "true Guernsey people" who aren`t scrounging layabouts? i bet you even know some?

Do you think there aren`t any "true Guernsey people" that aren`t greedy and done very well out of the finance industry also with land and property? again i bet you know some?

I said i know plenty but i did not say ALL "true Guernsey people" are like that did i? as i know the vast majority aren`t and might i add neither are the vast majority who settle here.

I am local but not deluded to enough as you seem to be to think all "true Guernsey people" are honest hard working never take more than they need kind of people.

May i suggest in order to rid yourself of your delusion you look around you.

Veridique

BCB -

Having read your response I am confused as to the ambiguity of your statements in both your posts with reference to “true Guernsey people”. Firstly you know “plenty” and “many” of said folk who are scroungers,greedy and layabouts. The definition of “ plenty” means a large amount and “many” a large number of.In your second post you state the vast majority are not scroungers, greedy and layabouts so which is it? If you had used the word “some” Guernsey people I would not have taken such umbrage to your attack on what turns out to be your own people. And as to your comments in questioning my honesty in relation to the the questions you have posed me, yes I have knowledge of all the types of people you mentioned, no society is perfect we are not Utopia. With regards to your comment on local peoples

greed in context to property and land, it is the arrival of the finance industry with their over inflated wages,

which pushed up the prices in the first place. You are telling me that if your house was valued at £500,000 and someone came to you and offered you the asking price you would turn around and say that’s okay I don’t want to be greedy just give me £250,000. I think not. By the way you did not answer my question as to whether your work is related to the finance industry? Think carefully as you were quick to question my integrity in answering your questions.

bcb

Stop trying to be clever you know darn well what i meant in my original post which is that there are "true Guernsey people" who are scrounging layabouts and yes i do know plenty of them (that doesn`t mean the majority) but i could use another word for that if you prefer.

Jim`s post suggested (to me) we are in a mess and when the greedy people have gone we Guernsey people will clean up said mess. That suggests to me this mess (if there is one) has been created by none Guernsey people and my whole point is that Guernsey people have played a part in this so lets not put all the blame on the non locals.

No i don`t work in the finance industry and never have but why do you assume i did because of my remarks? are you suggesting anyone who would make such remarks must work in finance?.

So you take umbrage to me insulting scroungers? why? is it because they happen to be Guernsey ones or just scroungers in general?

The word "some" can mean an unspecified amount so that could also mean plenty?.

bcb

sorry i meant guernseysim

veridique

bcb- Tut tut no need to throw your toys out the pram, it might help you get Guernseysim's name right next time. Your posts were ambiguous and I have a right to my opinion as to how they were perceived, I do not need to be told that "I darn well knew what you meant" do not assume to be so presumptuous. Let's get this straight once and for all, I took umbrage to your overall negativity regarding locals and which was accentuated by the use of the words "many" and "plenty". I have no time for scroungers and layabouts who abuse the system. So we come to the greedy and you did not answer my question, would you sell your £500,000 house for £250,000 so as to not be branded greedy?

bcb

Nice try but i think it was you throwing the toys in your response to my first post.

Yes you have a right to your opinion which was suggesting i work in finance am not local and should leave the Island.

Your umbrage to my overall negativity regarding Locals (your words).You could have changed that statement for a more accurate one just by adding in the words layabouts and scroungers.

Your question regarding my house is just nonsense as i doubt that is defined as greed. i`ve worked hard for my house and as the value rises (or falls) so do all the others so i`m really no better off am i? how can you try and use such an example as greed? you couldn`t make it up.

Vincent

Im a 23 year old working in the finance industry and quite frankly find it insulting that we are all classed as "greedy people". I work hard for my money, and even then I dont earn anymore than friends of mine of the same age who are plumbers, builders, electricians etc.

I think its incredibly ignorant to stereotype "all finance workers" the way you have.

I am guernsey born and bred, but decided on a career in finance as opposed to tomato growing. Not saying in anyway that growers dont work hard as I know they do. But your explanation of greed applies to an incredibly small minority in the banking industry. Most of us just enjoy what we do and work hard to do it!

islander

There has to be a line drawn between Finance and the States of Guernsey.

If Finance are laying off staff then the states of guernsey must follow its financing deficits too.

With low banking interest for a long forseeable future investment has to find new avenues to persue.Everbody has to tighten their belts for the unforseeable future.

Unfortunally job losses increases stress and unstability throughot our local work force

Snooki

Where's your logic Islander. The States didn't follow the Finance Sector by awarding unsustainable bonuses to its staff when times were good, so why should they now lay off staff to follow suit just because Finance is a busted flush??

kevin

Very good post, absolutely right!

Tim South

The sad story of good business getting greedy and well paid regulators both in Jersey and Guernsey not doing proper regulating and policing the business although they tell the public and politicians that they do.

Proof.

Israeli tax authorities vowed to track down citizens whose names appeared on a leaked list of account holders with deposits held in the English Channel island of Jersey, a well-known tax haven.

The leak comes weeks after a tax amnesty expired September 27, under which Israelis had been allowed to belatedly report any income and assets held abroad and pay tax with minimum fines or other punishments.

http://www.haaretz.com/business/602-israelis-named-on-leaked-hsbc-list-of-tax-haven-account-holders.premium-1.476915

Greek Finance Minister Yannis Stournaras has requested information from the U.K. government on Greeks holding HSBC Holdings Plc (HSBA) accounts in Jersey.

Stournaras wrote to U.K. Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne asking for the information, according to an e-mailed statement from the Athens-based

Finance Ministry.

The Jersey Financial Services Commission, the island’s financial regulator, said on Nov.13 it will investigate HSBC’s data loss and examine the “anti-money laundering systems and controls” at the bank. HSBC told the regulator it will co- operate.

http://www.businessweek.com/news/2012-11-15/greece-asks-u-dot-k-dot-chancellor-for-hsbc-account-holders-in-jersey

forest

I do feel for everybody who has had the news of redundancy this week but I don't think for one minute that this is an isolated case.

I have thought for some time now that Guernsey is gradually pricing itself out of the employment market due to the ridiculously high costs of living and working here. EVERYTHING from property to food, Electricity to telcoms cost twice as much and of course it has all been market driven for years (ironically by the influx of highly paid finance professionals in the good times)

The trend is bound to continue and increase year on year as businesses look to maintain their profitability in a dire global economy looking for cheaper labour in other parts of the world where they can employ staff for a fraction of the cost.

In stark contrast to this, we have our illustrious deputies and senior civil servants who are refusing to change their spending ways or find savings, and who will quite possibly push many local people over the financial edge when they eventually demand more taxes from us all

when they fail miserably with the FTP.

Guernsey is going to be a very different place in a few years from now.

TED

forest-

Very well said. And all true

SaintsBay

Todays Press:

Dep Kev says "Guernsey remains a premier funds jurisdiction and can expect continued growth"

Guernsey Investment Funds Association chairman Horace Camp said recently "he has previously expressed concern that the out-sourcing model was becoming increasingly common LOCALLY".

COME ON Dep Kev - get real.

Read James Falla's piece at the foot of page 2 of todays Press.

At least this made the Press.

guernseysim

how many of you are here becouse you wont to be and not just here for the money . if off shore banking left and times got hard i would still be here making do with wot we have . how many of you would be. you would all be off to where ever the money was and not give Guernsey a second thought as long as you have your hoildays and your range rover sport and your very large flash house Guernsey means nothing to you just wot it can offer you in money like i said and will always say greed will get the better of you all in the end .

Local Pete

What a bitter, twisted and sad individual....I pity you...

Shields

@ guernseysim

Firstly, learn to spell. Secondly, stop trying to push the idea that all finance workers are non-local and disrespectful to this island. Do you really think that the majority of employees in the finance industry do it for the greed. Do you think that Tim the school leaver or Frank the father of three are there for the cocaine and topless models?

Furthermore, if finance went completely down the pan an awful lot of income would be stripped from the States, this would have an enormous affect on your lifestyle whether you like to think so or not. If times got really tough here would you really be that bitter about the folks who would leave to find employment? Would you curse someone because they're off to the UK ot find a job to feed their kids? Get over yourself. You're not special because you don't work in finance and you're not special if you do.

B Le Maitre

Well said. If the finance industry implodes, everyone at every level of society will suffer. There will be no tax income funding new school buildings and hospital wings. The law firms will lay off staff (and it will be the local clerical staff that will be hit here), accountancy firms will suffer, the taxi driver who ferries people to and from the airport, the sandwich shops, cafe's, restaurants.

B Le Maitre

How do the States feel that they can "help" the redundant? Can they find a person on 35k with a mortgage and 3 kids a mortgage? Probably not!!!!

conrad

Yes Offshore banking destroyed the island as we knew it. unfortunately the damage has been done and peoples mindset has changed forever, the Guernsey we knew and loved only remains in the memories of those who are old enough to have seen the change.

Sick_of_Sycophants

no, nothing is forever, Conrad.

Life is change, we adapt or die, that's the rules.

Yes, Guernsey has been changed by money, materially wealthy but spiritually pretty much bankrupt, but if there's one thing we've always done well here, it's adapt.

We do it really well, and we always will. :)

SaintsBay

If anybody is interested in what Guernsey & Jersey will be like in economic terms during the next few years take a look at sites for The Hebrides, Shetland and the Scily Isles.

Thats us that is.

Backchat

Yes look at the population figures too!

jerseynige

Unfortunately, you only need to visit Alderney to see what is happening already. The little island that I am very fond of is already showing signs of decline. (Not helped by there being no direct flights between Jersey and Alderney so it costs Jersey visitors a lot to visit for us, £300.00 for my wife and I at Christmas.) It's still lovely, nevertheless.

Island Wide Voting

I spent a fortnight in Alderney in the 70's

I seem to remember that it was on a Sunday

GM

IWV

A friend of mine was told by his doctor that he had 6 months to live. He asked his doctor if there was anything that could be done to prolong his life. The doctor said: "I suggest that you go and live in Alderney". "How will that help me?", said my friend. To which the doctor replied: "Well, it will make 6 months seem like 2 years".

Forest

Keep em coming boys!

guernseysim

more should of been done to look after local people years ago .not every one can or wont to work in a office . any where else if the village or town grow thay have the room to grow by moving out in to the country side guernsey cant so a lid should of been put on the number of people to live here . all that has happened is true local people have been forced out to make room for the greedy. but most of the states members are none local so are just paving the way for others to take over . the way you make your money in off shore banking is wrong and will be stamped out one day very soon i hope

SF

Xenophobic claptrap. The finance industry came here because the conditions were right. Just like horticulture, shipbuilding and privateering before them. And like them, when the conditions change, they will move on.

Many a Guernseyman has made his living off-Island. Do you think their hosts felt the same way about them that you suggest we do about those that have come to Guernsey?

As a Guernseyman I left this Island to seek work. When I returned I was grateful for the finance industry as it allowed me to establish myself back in the Island of my birth. It also afforded me the opportunity to employ builders, plumbers, electricians etc and buy kitchens, bathrooms and the like.

The Island has changed, but so has the world we live in. Harking back to the "good ol' days" isn't going to change that. We need to deal with today's reality, not a nostalgic view of yesterday's rose tinted utopia. Which, oh by-the-way, it was not.

Redundancy is a devastating blow. Not only to the individual, but also to their families. Your energies would be better put to use finding the next big employment opportunity for the future working population of our Island rather than running down the one thing that has kept us going over the last 40 years.

john

So many jobs going, does this mean a reduction in housing licences and therfor population ?. This should allow HSSD to reduce number of beds required, Schools to close due to reduction in pupils .... FTP targets met :) .. Capita can go home knowing they ahve done a great job ...

Snooki

I don`t get this. On other threads and in Digard's daily anti Civil Service, Tony Webber-esque rants he wants all States employees to take pay cuts and reduce the gold plated pension.

Nowhere have I read that finance sector workers must take a pay cut to make their jobs and institutions competitive with other jurisdictions.

So it`s simple finance folks! Award yourselves a 25% pay cut, take holidays at a Haven campsite in the UK and downsize the yummy-mummy 4x4 to a Ford Focus. Civil servants having been living like this for years! Start living in the real World.

Redundant

Snooki, many financial institutions and in particular HSBC have not given their staff a wage rise in several years. Many of these people are local. Yes the 'Big Bosses' receive an enormous salary and bonus, but these people are the ones providing the services which generate the cash so these few can live their luxury lifestyles.

Dave Haslam

Its time to wake up.

The finance industry cares about 1 thing and 1 thing only, their bottom line.

The deputies appear to be under the misconception that these companies care about the island, they dont give 2 hoots what happens to Guernsey and frankly as more of them move away from the island as the world becomes more virtual and more and more back office will be shephered elsewhere, the mess left in their wake will be nothing short of cataclysmic.

Its coming, so just hold on to your hats. The deputies will stand there bemoaning broken promises etc, but the reality is we need to protect whats left, if we are clever, and ruthless and stop cow towing to them, then we can mitigate the potential damage, but we all know its not going to happen, we'll stand idly by and watch them do it and in 5 years we'll have a deputy coming out in the press saying that they didnt see it coming!

As for HSBC, well the one thing I am most suprised about is that its taken them this long to finally kill off what remains of Bank of Bermuda, I thought they would manage it in 5 years. A company that has a history of always hunting for the the cheapest labour, pioneers of the Indian call centre, and with a big history of going where its cheap regardless of the consequence. They will take advantage of the Limerick wage subsidy for as long as it exists and in 10 years time they will be onto the next jurisdiction

There is an insect that HSBC remind me of.... Locusts

Island Wide Voting

Dave Haslam

Well you can bet that if HSBC has spotted a gain by closing down Guernsey back office operations the other banks will be looking at it too

Some posters reckon it might be a good thing in that many of the 40 redundancies will mean several 'incomers' will leave the island thus easing the pressure on housing but I doubt whether back office work needed incomers to do it

The 40 who will be losing their jobs will be local youngsters just starting out or perhaps very recently tied in to a 25 year mortgage on a property which could well start losing value

It doesn't bode well for our current crop of school leavers

GM

IWV

In fact, its more likely to result in extra licence holders to kickstart new businessss to replace lost jobs. Mid you. That's a small price to pay if its successful.

Dave Haslam

You aren't wrong. The banking sector in particular is very vulnerable - owned by institutions who are having tough times and who must cut costs. Fortunately, most of the fund and fiduciary businesses are owned by local residents, which means that external shareholder pressure is less. However, those businesses are already outsourcing to places like Mauritius and Malta to cut costs - Guernsey is extremely expensive to employ bookkeepers, accountants and administrators.

The finance industry is not too dissimilar to the retail industry. It has to evolve and move with the times. Regrettably, that does not augur well for Guernsey. Rocky times ahead, but we've been here before in the early 1980s when Tektronix, Manufacturers Hanover, First Chicago and other large employers pulled out. They were replaced, and Guernsey has to find a new way to replace them in what is a very different world today.

Dave Haslam

Ray, you are correct, the redundancies will come largely (if not all) from local staff. The back office positions are largely filled by local staff (as is the norm for most companies here), I know this for a fact at HSBC as I know a lot of the people who are in the firing line here. Anyone brought over on licence will be safe, usually because there is no need to bring licencees over for the scut-work.

GM

Yes there are a lof of local admin companies, but there a also a fair few admin big hitters owned by large international companies, IPES, Northern, RBC to name a quick 3, if these guys decided to up sticks this would have a massive impact on our unemployment which is already starting to creak, and ask any recruitment agency.

Other than that I agree, however the difference here (IMO of course) is that with some clever legislation we could do something to mitigate this, but we wont because the deputies wouldnt like the hairdryer moments they may get from industry bigwigs (of the type that are here on Licence).

Regarding a change in direction, there are a few local businessmen who are trying their damndest to offer alternatives, yet they are being hampered in their every move by the states.

GM

Dave Haslam

Yes - I agree your points.

I know its a fine balance between preserving the residual finance industry instead of accelerating its departure (we know only too well that numerous other jurisdictions will be offering all kinds of incentives). For example, how many organisations have operations here, in Jersey and perhaps in the Isle of Man? If there is contraction then there will possibly be the need for just one of the three jurisdictions. What steps can we take to ensure that Guernsey is the one chosen? I would say that we may well be the preferred one of these jurisdictions at present, but a governmental own goal or a few incentives from elsewhere and that could well change.

The quicker that we can get new businesses here the better, and if it is non-finance business then that's a definite plus.

GM

Dave Haslam

And today's news from Jersey - their government is throwing an extra £4m a year at their finance industry to ensure that it maximises its chances of winning new business.

That's precisely what we are up against. Guernsey Finance hasn't got a hope of competing with that. Jersey Finance are already running staffed representative offices in Abu Dhabi, Hong Kong, Shanghai and Mumbai, and possible elsewhere. We have one person in Shanghai. They are well ahead of the game in efforts to attract replacement offshore business.

How do we compete with that? Do we throw in the towel or do we compete? We simply don't have a choice - we have to compete. It will be politically very sensitive locally, but what's the alternative?

B Le Maitre

Agreed - call centres opened in India and as salary increases and cost of living went up in Hydrabad and Bangalore, they then offshored to Malaysia for certain back office functions.

B Le Maitre

Totally agree with the posts re HSBC salaries. An HSBC commercial manager starts on 30k a year and gives advice to small business clients. Those clients often seem to think their manager is on 60k+ a year. A friend of mine told me that an electrician client was truly shocked to learn that their bank manager earned less than half of what they earned

Guernseychap

I worked at HSBC 2 years ago and was senior banking advisor, and was on less than £25k a year.

Just

"Senior banking advisor"?

What, at only 21 years of age? No wonder you were only on £25k! How could you be a 'senior' anything at that age!?!

Guernseychap

Age has nothing to do with it. What would you rather... a 35yr old senior advisor who has never worked in a bank before, or a young person who has spent 5-6 years in banking, been through banking exams, and is good at what they do?

B Le Maitre

Managerial salaries start on about 30k (but of course there is no overtime pay and a lot of the longstanding admin staff that are on 28k wont countenance becoming a manager because they will actually be worse off. Plus the bonus scheme - I know of officer / clerical level staff earning much more than the managers

andtherest

Thats just the basic salary though - what about non contributory pension paid throughout their employment and medical cover. That equates to thousands which people not working in the finance sector dont get - so for everyone comparing salaries with non finance workers you have got to take all of these 'extras' into the equation.

Dave

andtherest I would say most finance firms offer between 5-7% of salary to go into a pension, some are higher. More often than not you would have to use their under performing funds. You would not be entitled to these pension contributions until you have been there two years if you leave before then they keep the money. In the UK every employee will have contributions from their firm soon.

boocu

@guernseysim

its 6.30am Monday morning time for you to wake up and milk your GSY cows

the problem if any is GSY has had it too good for too long and the ( not fit for purpose ) politians that make up the states of deliberation (far too many of them- ex Disc Jockeys and the like)have failed quite brilliantly in ensuring enough has been stashed away for when the hard times came round ( now) The States were and are the biggest threat to this island.

As it appears Mr Guernseysim you are anti anythign not local and the local man is a hard workign example to all, will you kindly explain why there are approx 500 (local) individuals registered unemployed available to work wen there is approx 4000 eastern Europeans workign on short term licenses in the service industries and what is left of the growing industry?

360_degrees

.....maybe it's a very small part of the population, 500, according to you, who are lazy work shy layabouts not wanting to work and happy to live off the state, because the benefits system allows them to....

maybe those 4000 Europeans are here and don't mind being treated so badly and paid so poorly as because, despite that, it's still better than what they can get in their own country (and who can blame them?)....

.....maybe it's because those 4000 imported European workers happily toil away for ridiculously long hours for very low rates, and because there are so many and they are happy to do so, the employers have no reason to decrease their profit margins and up the appallingly low rate of pay or shorten the hours to a more reasonable week....

.....maybe if there weren't so many imported European workers here willing to work 60 hrs a week for peanuts, the employers would have to up their appalling rate of pay and improve work conditions, and the local work shy fops would have no excuse other than to take the jobs that were readily available....

....maybe if we allowed this situation to continue unabated, we would end up like the UK, where generations of the local populace live on benefits, whilst millions of people from all over the world flock there to work longer hours for lower rates of pay, thus incentivising the employers to continue to pay a wage that people can barely survive, on, in fact, it's better for them to stay unemployed....

maybe it's all of the above.

A.J.

I think you will find the reason that these businesses that employ outside labour, pay low wages for one reason, and one alone. Because they would make no profit at all, if they paid a higher wage,and their business would therefore fail. Life is not all about greed it is also about survival. I know because I've been in that situation, myself.

B Le Maitre

Good point AJ. The foreign workers are paid a lot less and live in shared accommodation (a lot of it at a standard I wouldnt keep a dog in).

For all of the fancy Aston Martin's and cocktails etc etc, we have guest workers living on this island in terrible accommodation.

More Local Than You

Truth be told, the future is worrying. I work in finance and we are looking to outsource more work, not only because it makes the bottom line better, but also since it's what our competitors are doing hence we cannot compete locally, let alone internationally.

The finance industry will remain on Guernsey, however it will be a very different to the golden goose that the island has got used to over the past 20-30 years.

The nature of the jobs here will be much harder to obtain, long gone are the days where someone could scrape 5 x A-C GCSEs and join a back office somewhere for £18k, then within 5 years be earning £30-£35k a year doing a 9-5 job.

All those "lifestyle" magazines that get distributed in Guernsey are also damaging in the sense that it makes people think they should be living like rich socialites on the back off the finance industry with the cars/kitchens/parties etc that go with it.

The C&E minister is a complete joke and I have ZERO confidence in his ability to sustain, generate or promote any finance business for the island.

forest

Couldn't agree more MLTU.

As I said earlier, Guernsey entire economy has been built upon a demand driven market to live and do business here particularly in the last 20 years or so which has over inflated costs to such a degree that it is now (ironically) made itself uncompetitive in a global market.

As for C&E you're spot on there too and if our government can't get its act together this year with the FTP they could quite easily be the straw that broke the donkeys back if they chose to introduce additional charges and taxes in such a difficult time.

GM

More Local Than You

I agree. The finance industry will look very different here in 5 years time. But then again, it already looks very different from 5 years ago, and to the 5 years before that.

It is fast-changing but I think the big difference this time is that in previous "evolutions" employees have simply moved into other areas, i.e. from banking and securities to funds or to fiduciary. This time around, the likely shift is nowhere near as easy to predict. Will it be a shift this time, or will it be a contraction? Personally, I think it will be a contraction. Hopefully though, it will be a manageable one.

I'm not sure that I agree with your perception of Kevin Stewart. Yes, there are questionmarks about his finance industry development credentials, but I think he is doing exactly the right thing trying to diversify the local economy so that there are jobs here for when the finance industry inevitably contracts. The fundamental problem here though is that the cost base is simply too high to encourage new industries to come here, whether its salary costs, housing costs (to import the job creators), freight costs etc if it has anything to do with shipping raw materials or finished goods.

I think we should look seriously towards investing part of our remaining rainy day fund to create appropriate incentives for new (non-finance) businesses to come here. This is commonplace all over the world, and its our best chance of achieving diversification.

SaintsBay

All posts made on 21st spot on.

The real pressure comes from the possibility(probability ?) that GST might have to be introduced to raise revenue because the FTP has failed and in addtion fund the pension deficit.

At least Dep Kev is looking around but I can't see Guernsey being attractive.

Work has started at the site off the Salt Pans - will it amount to anything?

forest

This is my prediction Saint Bay.

The FTP will fail because the civil service sees it as such a threat to their very existence that they will simply tell our elected deputies that it cannot be achieved (it is after all the senior civil servants that run the island, not deputies - they are simply puppets)

Our deputies will have their strings pulled and within 2 years time GST will be introduced along with a whole raft of additional charges to make up the shortfall in the annual budget deficit.

This will coincide with the announcement that the states final salary pension scheme is now 500 million in deficit and will require millions more in tax payer contributions annually. it will also be announced that social security contributions have to rise significantly to sustain the states pension while islanders will still still struggle to see even cost of living rises in their wages.

Meanwhile the finance industry will continue to contract and the local economy in general will suffer hugely as we find ourselves with less and less disposable income to spend with each other due to sky rocketing taxes and charges from government.

It's a perfect storm waiting to bankrupt Guernsey and our government will be responsible.

Mad_Max

...visions of Admiral Park as a post apocalyptic wasteland, with dishevelled, homeless bankers and politicians pushing defunct computers around in shopping trollies muttering dementedly to themselves about how it'll 'all be fine' comes to mind.....

on the positive side, if Admiral Park does die out as a business area, just think of all that square footage we'll have for inexpensive housing....!

GM

forest

Very well put indeed. I do hope you are wrong, but sadly I think your predictions will prove to be very accurate.

A territorial tax system is essential to collect more tax from corporates who TRADE here, as a refinement and improvement to zero-10. It is imperative to have an "effective" zero-tax product to preserve as much of the finance industry as possible, but corporates who actually trade here could all be paying 10%, 15% or even 20% without us becoming uncompetitive (always the vital factor).

GST would then become the back-up if the amount of extra taxes collected from corporates was still not enough. I don't think we should go down the GST route until we have properly explored a territorial tax system (as per Hong Kong and Singapore, where it works perfectly).

forest

Just saying it as I see it GM.

The territorial tax system sounds like a perfect solution for us. Was this ever considered as an option or did we just follow blindly follow what our competitors were doing?

Island Wide Voting

Spartacus

'forest' might be GM in disguise... discuss at great length

GM

IWV

Could be, but isn't!

More Local Than You

Agreed with both GM and Forest in what you say, and reading about GST does worry me.

The cost of living is so high in Guernsey already, utilities and food are incredibly costly and are likely to only increase.

Fiona Le Poidevin and the Guernsey Finance gang can do as many jollies as they like out to India, Singapore etc but it's all hot air - they are just another jurisdiction bandying around for business in a hugely competitive and global market.

As for what can be done, it's going to take a sea change of not only government action, but also people's attitudes and this right to entitlement, greed and luxury lifestyle aspiration that the finance industry has brought to Guernsey over the years.

Despite the great community groups that exist in Guernsey, their remains a lot of self-interest and "I'm alright Jack" mentality - particularly with those in finance.

As for the solution, I have no idea - but surely there must be an argument for diversification re industries and commerce in Guernsey.

GM

More Local That You

Re your last paragraph, there has definitely been a case for diversification for about 15 years now. But what industries and other commercial activity would be viable here?

Nobody has come up with anything which might be viable and sustainable, but its fair to say that competing with finance industry salaries is a huge deterrent. Sportingbet is one of the view diversifications that I can think of. I would imagine that any entrepreneur who is attracted by Guernsey's corporate and tax regime to move here and set up a business here would soon realise that the much higher salary costs for staff would very quickly erode those tax benefits.

It might work for businesses not requiring a significant local labour force, but that's clearly not what we need!

More Local Than You

I wonder if Sportingbet will be staying put following the William Hill et al buy-out?

Very hard to understand what prospects the island currently has other than finance.

Can you imagine the impact if Specsavers listed on a stock exchange and they decided in the interests of costs/skillbase decided to pull out the island?

SaintsBay

Forest

Bang On !

I have been predicting this for about 5 years - those who know me would confirm this to be so.

They would also now agree with me whereas before they did not as they were up to their armpits in new kitchens, BMW's, holidays in Dubai etc

A huge wolf is at the door but Deputies are in denial, at least publicly.

Go to your next surgery and ask anyone of them - and they won't believe you.

forest

I hope I'm wrong SB, I really do. I don't want to see my island destroyed by these self serving over paid morons in power but as the fog of procrastination lifts it is becoming clear where we are headed.

The FTP for example was put on hold last year because certain departments said that it was too difficult to achieve. Now we have back bench deputies (brehaut et al) lobbying for a full review of it because they are concerned that it will be too work intensive for departments to impliment and "we need more time"

These rebel deputies haven't gone and got that information for themselves, Its all being provided to them from behind the scenes by senior ciivil servants and top management who like things just as they are and have no intention of changing and will keep providing the excuses for as long as our spineless deputies let them.

boocurr

How many politicians does it take to change a lightbulb?

answer = doesnt matter the lights have aleady gone out on this once beautiful island.

reason = not all but a large % of hopeless politicians ( too many to make a decison and see it through)

too many lazy locals who lay around havin chosen a lifestyle choice of benefit claiming and firing out as many kids as they can to any old bloke

an island with more registered motor cars and vans than actual people and a public transport system not fit for 3rd world

too little too late

islander

I think Sparticus and G M are in love but not sure who should be the bread winner.

SaintsBay

Forest

Again, spot on.

The tax and spend lefties like Brehaut will do their best to support Civil Servants that can't and won't change.

There is a rump of politicans that will do anything to be voted in and be kept in because it is their only job (and pension)prospect - they know who they are.

I can see a huge battle coming between the new reformers (St Pierre, Soulsby, Green, Stewart (yes)etc) on one hand and the CS with union support allied to the old-guard on the other because implementing GST is easier than not implementing it.

What has shocked me when discussing such issues with deputys either one-to-one or at surgeries, is their willingness to lay into one another.

We should respect the fact that party politics does work in every other democracy and should be implemented here - then you could have island wide voting.

But thats another issue.

jsimpson

I am afraid the writing is on the wall...the good times are over. Is the FTP about saving money or the States realising that the golden goose is not gonna lay as many eggs?

http://www.expatsblog.com/news/2101135450/guernsey-no-longer-leading-offshore-finance-hubs

What rot!!

That article looks like it was written by Richard Murphy or Lawrence Aegerter, not least because it is strewn with factual errors.

Island Wide Voting

What Rot

There must be some mistake.Why would the Finance Officer of the Guernsey Housing Association get involved with such a seemingly anti-Guernsey article?

jsimpson

My concern is that articles like this, whether factual or not, create a certain impression. The stability of the financial sector is largely based on perception....and articles like this have an impact on that. The Expat community by en large are financially independent individuals living off the income of investments (if they are of the older persuasion)and articles like this, aimed directly at them create doubt don't they?

What rot!!

Whoops, sorry, I meant to say Arnald/Fast Robert/TECGL etc, it gets so confusing when people post under so many different identities.

Island Wide Voting

What Rot

I don't recognize the tag TECGL but you're not the only one becoming totally confused by multiple identities !

It's quite a while ago now but I seem to recall that before Fast Robert became Arnald he used to post as Lawrence ... presumably a different Lawrence

veridique

BCB -

With reference to your comment "how can you try to use such an example as greed, you couldn't make it up", well actually you apparently did in your second post when you said I must know some greedy true Guernsey people who have,quote, done very well out of the finance industry with land and property! Which is why I posed you the hypothetical question regarding the sale of your house. You answered honestly but in doing so joined those "true Guernsey people" YOU chose to brand and criticize as "greedy" a comment I found to be harsh.

bcb

I was talking about those who have done well in regards to property deals purely for the purpose of making money and NOT just to have a place of their own in which to raise a family and obviously having somewhere to live. I would imagine it was obvious to most the point i was making but it seems to have gone right over your head for some reason?.

Have you read some of the posts by guernseysim? and the responses he has had and rightly so. I stand by what i have said and if you to take things out of context then thats your problem.

I like my Island and the people of Guernsey but we are not all whiter than white and that was the point i was trying to get across to guernseysim.

I am sure you have read guernseysim posts but have said nothing about that instead you jump on me, i wonder why that is? are you one of those who are happy to read bile towards others as long as their not true Guerns?.

I don`t actually have a problem with greed as far as making money and just trying to do well is concerned its just when it is used and acquired in some of the underhanded ways that i think most people take a dull view of.

Jeff

Property trading really isn't as bad over here as say London or even Jersey up until a few years ago. Probably the scrapping of capital gains on property wasn’t the best move, although for companies trading in property they would still be taxed.

Not referring to you BCB but it is becoming a general theme on this site to criticise every area of society, whether an industry or class, i.e. greedy finance workers, wasteful civil servants, idiotic politicians, lazy/scrounging benefit claimants, opulent lifestyles of the upper-class etc.

Guernsey is only going to see change when we all realise we are not entitled to luxuries or high standards of living, in fact we have misunderstood what luxuries are: water, food, clothing, warmth, electric etc. Driving a car is a luxury, owning your own home is a luxury, holidays are a luxury, free education is a luxury; it’s about time we all appreciated this more than we do.

Of course we can play the blame game for the situation this island is in but it won’t change the fact that we are here in this difficult situation. Until we have people that want to see things turn around and are willing to do something about it, nothing will change and it will lead to even harder times.

The only way we are going to see change is to change ourselves firstly, then demand change through our politicians.

Ok, so most will say this island is truly being run by the higher level civil servants, well let’s lobby our politicians to make these men and women more accountable for both decisions and lack of decisions, for effective changes in the FTP as one example.

I’ve said this on here before but I cannot see how a politician can oversee a department and be responsible for cuts if they do not know what is involved in the running of that department in the first place. They need to know the goings on from the receptionist level to the CFO. Spend the first 6 months sitting down with all your staff and see what they do and ask them where they think savings can be made.

Ultimately though, I truly believe The States of Guernsey should be regulated in the same way the finance industry is regulated. The finance industry is regulated because they act in a fiduciary role on behalf of a client, they must perform duties to best practice (laws and regulatory framework) and all for the benefit of the client – ultimately the licensed fiduciary is responsible for bad decisions that can lose clients their money. Why is this not the case for The States? They are acting as a fiduciary for every tax/SI payer by holding our tax/SI monies for the running of this island.

People have historically described Guernsey people as being stubborn, well perhaps we are, but as a 100% local living here for over three decades, I have noticed more of an apathy rather than stubbornness in people; not just the locals but in people from the UK/overseas almost becoming apathetic on issues such as these mentioned in this thread. Until we make a point to raise these issues with our elected politicians, until we are willing to actually do something about our situation, then nothing will change but get worse.

Until we demand change, nothing will change.

Michael R

Excellent post, Jeff.

I fear that we are all turning into a bunch of "moaning minnies", seeking to blame everyone but ourselves.

I certainly am not blameless in this regard but your post is a timely reminder that perhaps we should all examine ourselves a little more thoroughly before accusing others.

More Local Than You

Fully agree Jeff with what you say, like one of my earlier post notes, I have a huge dislike for these local lifestyle magazines (there seem to be several of these now) showcasing £50k cars, £40k kitchens, £10k holidays, £15k pieces of jewellery, £2m houses etc ad nauseam - all creating this distorted image of how people on this island should be living (and presumably all off the back of the Finance industry), not to mention the same old faces i.e. the 'great and good' finance socialite events that look like something out of the Rocky Horror Show that these magazines print.

Final thought = There is no wealth but life.

Pepe Le Pew

MLTY - You have described my feelings on those lifestyle magazines perfectly. They sell an image of Guernsey that the majority of people cannot afford - and that includes people in the finance industry.

My suspicion is a fair proportion of people living these lifestyles are mortgaged to the hilt and up to their eyeballs in other debt. I fear for those people - they are living an illusion and acting like ostriches.

SaintsBay

Great post Jeff.

We did vote for change though - a Sarnia Spring except we have the Winter of discontent.

We can change our deputies but we have Civil Servants for life.

The new intake are trying their best but they are fighting the CS and many of the old politburo.

More Local Than You

Thanks Pepe.

There are a lot of islanders (some of my good friends in fact) do seem to have a champagne taste on a beer budget and the tripe that these magazines print certainly fuels this. I suppose these magazines are not unique to Guernsey.

I just have an issue with the exaulted position people in finance have in the local media. Why doesn't these magazines have interviews with nurses, care workers, bin men etc i.e. people at the coal face who make the more valuable contribution to the island than finance.

And the funny thing is, I work in the local finance industry - I do my blessings that I have a good job, but sometimes, it's a pretty soulless industry. I think it was Henry Ford that said "A business that makes nothing but money is a poor business".

Don't get me wrong, I love Guernsey and will be the first to defend it from any criticism, but the island I was born and grew up in has changed rapidly in the last 10 - 15 years and not for the better.

boocurr

Jeff - fantastic post

i think GSY has had it too good for too long - ( punched well above its weight) all you have to do is walk around our tiny island and see fat middle aged plums driving Aston Martins ( who in their right mind would buy and drive an Aston Martin in an island where there is not only a 35 mph speed limited but roads that are geared up for a horse and cart at best -answer fat directors of finance companies who think they are 007 but in reality they are more like Mr Bean meets Ronald Macdonald)-so you see these fat ugly bald self important idiots alongside groups of ( sorry they are local to be entitled for the benefits they demand) acne ridden "CHAVS" pushing prams, smoking cigarettes, spitting on passers by, swearing like Millwall away at West Ham, dress sense of Jimmy Saville and no wish to give anything to society.

2013 and will be interesting

Island Wide Voting

boocurr

I believe Guernsey Tourism is advertising for a Director of operations

Might suit you down to the ground ?

pb falla

The gravy train is coming to its end and many of those middle aged parents who put greed before family life are responsible for the inconsiderate youth of today in the islands

Bring back the good old days,or are they lost forever ?

boocurr

island wide voting - thanks for your kind words and your suggestion however there is no way i would be interested in such a post as i imagine trying to promote Guernsey as a tourist destination would be a thankless and unrewarding task.

ADVERT

Come visit Guernsey - more expensive to fly to from the UK than say Barcalona or Florence, the weather on a par with the scottish highlands, some reasonable nightlife and restaurants ( if you can avoid the chavish local lowlifes who get paraletic drunk and behave like utter feral scum - oh and you may struggle to get a taxi home as there are no mimi cab firms operating and taxi's are at a premium both in availability and cost)

More Local Than You

That advert is very funny. And far too close to the bone.

Noel

Hi Saints Bay I know you don't like Civil servants but, ever bitter comment you make about them makes me think you actually want to be one. or at least one of the ones you seam to describe so frequently.

Not all civil servants are as you describe not all civil servants are joined at the hip to the finance industry and in fact not all Civil servants like each other or know what each other do. Again a bit like you. go down to a working mans pub on the bridge Go call a Public service employee (PSE) a Civil servant then i suggest you duck and run for the door (bet you won't make it)

boocurr

more local than you - sadly i agree

there is a saying , " prevention is better than cure " in the case of GSY i think we are way past the prevention stage

i imagine ISLAND WIDE VOTING - whoeevr he or she ( or it ) may be . has the best interests of Guern at heart however may never have had the opportunity to get off island and thus has nothign to compare to ...

how about forget island wide voting

how about rather than 49 states members ...

lets get rid of 42 of them and have 7 with the correct and required skills

SaintsBay

Hi Noel

Two PSW brothers at HSSD describing to me the waste and sloth there.

One sister - a nurse - ditto.

A very good friend at Income Tax - you really dont want to know what is going on there.

My wife did a number of weeks in Admin at HSSD - complete chaos.

A colleague is a new intake deputy who is pulling his hair out.

I deal with T&R on a regular basis and am aware of the depair of staff especially with the chaos that SAP is creating.

Just relating what I hear and experience.

I also am fully aware of the difference between a CS and a PSW - my own family tell me often - with feeling.

GM

Saints Bay

No surprise at all, I hear of workers at Social Security being ordered to carry forward work till the following week so that they will have something to do next week.

It seems to be a mess from top to bottom and needs a total review of working practices, time and motion studies etc.

Here's an idea. Give each head of department a substantial bonus scheme over the next 3 years based on total cost savings without any deterioration in service. The net benefit of that will be felt for many years. Call it an investment. Easy to say that they shouldn't get a bonus just for doing their job, but that's just not enough to make it happen.

Interested

With all these redundancies, will the states be taking on these people or making the private sector do instead of giving new or extending existing licences?