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Insolvent Banks and the Financial Sector Safety Net - Lessons from the Northern Rock Crisis

Andrew Campbell

(2008) 20 SAcLJ 316

This article explores the subject of banking crises, paying particular attention to the recent banking crisis in the UK, and attempts to provide some guidance as to what lessons can be learned from this. The crisis involved the Northern Rock bank, a leading mortgage provider, which found itself in financial difficulties in the late summer of 2007. The article provides an examination of the following: why banks deserve special treatment; the use of the financial sector safety net; regulation and supervision of banks; the protection of depositors; a legal framework for dealing with insolvent banks. It then sets out the Northern Rock story before considering the position in Singapore.