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Osborne blames bankers for crisis

Shadow chancellor George Osborne has criticised bankers and regulators for allowing the financial crisis to get out of control.

Speaking to delegates at the Conservative party conference in Birmingham today, he says: “No-one called time on the age of irresponsibility. Like any party that goes on too long, the party got out of hand.

“We have had to watch apparently rock-solid banks get blown over like trees.”

The shadow chancellor lays much of the blame of the root of the crisis with bankers and investors, saying the failures of the banking sector are the failures of bankers themselves.

Directing his speech to bankers, he says: “If you take risks then you must bear the costs. If you pay out big dividends when you should be rebuilding your balance sheets then you will be held to account.”

Osborne also promised to fight the next election on bringing borrowing under control. He says government borrowing will be kept in check by an Office of Budget Responsibility, which will work independently as the Bank of England does.

Osborne adds: “Chancellors will be forced to be responsible or bear the consequences.”

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