In an era when investigative journalism has been all but side-lined despite the brave efforts of a few dedicated souls, and media generally is concentrated in the hands of a few self-serving individuals, this article by Eric Fry is a breath of fresh air.

English: US President Barack Obama and British...

The revelations of criminal concealment and covert collaboration at the very top of the British and U.S. financial systems are disgraceful.

The rate fixing in the LIBOR scandal should result in prosecutions to the fullest extent of the law in both jurisdictions. A message should be sent to those involved in the governance and management of financial institutions that such entities are not the personal playthings of the temporary stewards employed to serve stakeholder interests. Nor are these stewards given a free hand to enrich themselves at the expense of others.

President Obama's so-called Financial System Reforms have done absolutely nothing to rein in the white-collar criminals, and the systemic - and endemic - non-disclosure which has prevailed in Wall Street for decades continues unabated.

David Cameron has been a mere spectator in the LIBOR spectacle, and the British banking system seems to be populated by the same type of individuals who appear to be extremely liberal in their interpretation of ethics, truth, and personal morality.

While this has all taken place in the Northern Hemisphere, we're not exempt here.

Suspect sales practices by certain Banks relating to Kiwisaver are becoming a more widespread issue locally.

In Australia, while most of the Banks avoided the CDO debacle and subsequent collapses in the U.K., U.S., and Europe, there is a school of thought which holds that this eventuated only because they missed the opportunity to get their noses into the trough quickly enough. Hence, only their lack of speed to market saved them, rather than some rational attempt to avoid the high-risk and ultimately catastrophic nature of these products.

However, Financial Advisers have the ultimate weapon at their disposal which Banks are powerless to counter, namely

- Advisers care about their clients.

Banks only care about the transactions, the numbers, and their profits. If you doubt that this is the case, check the latest results from the various Banking institutions, or ask anyone who used to work in a Bank.

For my money, a relationship based on care and attention will win every time against glossy, expensive adverts which only serve to hide the dark and shady corners  occupied by Banks.

The Laird of Albany