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Spectator Money

2017: The best and the worst of the year that was

15 December 2017

12:49 PM

15 December 2017

12:49 PM

And so to my annual awards. Best business recovery of 2017: Lloyds Banking Group, which returned from the bailout sin-bin to full membership of the private sector in May. The year’s most lamented collapse: the upmarket Swan Hellenic cruise line in January. And the least lamented? The devil’s own PR firm, Bell Pottinger, in September.

The best business books, by a long chalk, were Till Time’s Last Sand, David Kynaston’s richly entertaining history of the Bank of England; and The Spider Network by David Enrich, which unravels the part played in the Libor scandal by Tom Hayes, the UBS trader who is serving a long stretch for conspiracy to defraud. Prosecutors painted Hayes as the ringmaster of the widespread cheating that infected interbank rate-fixing between 2007 and 2010, hence his sentence of 14 years, later reduced to 11. But Enrich sees him more as the fly in a spider’s web woven by many traders, brokers and their bosses — leaving the reader with a strong sense that justice has not been done.


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