FT: Muddling through with money and morals

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Written by Michael Skapinker

The call to introduce an ethical spirit into the market has provoked a fascinating debate in this newspaper, on FT.com and elsewhere. On one side are Mr Costa and Stephen Green, chairman of HSBC and author of the book Good Value.

On the other are Eamonn Butler, director of the Adam Smith Institute, and Philip Booth, editorial director of the Institute of Economic Affairs, who argue that capitalism’s problem has not been a deficit of ethics.

Mr Butler argues that the crisis had its origins in US government policies forcing banks to lend to people with poor credit records. Mr Booth wrote that when central banks held interest rates down, asset prices rose and bad risks began to seem good. Mr Butler and Mr Booth assert it is an unfettered free market that encourages virtue and government regulation that destroys it.

Published on FT.com here.