Monday, 29 September 2008

Bradford & Bingley have bitten the dust

B&B went down the drain over the weekend. This was widely predicted, not least by me. The deal is a bit strange though. Santander, the Spanish bank which owns Abbey and Alliance & Leicester has acquired the viable part of the business for an unknown sum and the taxpayer gets to keep the so-called toxic waste, ie, all the bundled buy-to-let mortgages that are going to be defaulted on when the amateur landlords throw back the keys to their new-build flats.

Nice! We get the dross and the Spanish get the cream. And what do the B&B shareholders get? Who knows? B&B wasn't bust (unlike Northern Rock say) but they seem to have been deprived of their property by government fiat. This smells a bit fishy. I wouldn't be surprised if the small shareholders aren't rather annoyed.

However there was good news over the weekend as well. Hannah Bradbeer got through two X-factor bootcamps and is off to be mentored by Cheryl Cole in Cannes, France.

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