Page last updated at 11:21 GMT, Saturday, 31 January 2009

'Donate big bonuses', mayor urges

Boris Johnson
The mayor stressed that 'banker bashing' is counter-productive

Bankers could help rebuild their "public esteem" by donating large bonus payouts to charitable causes, London Mayor Boris Johnson has said.

The mayor made the comments to BBC Radio 4's Today programme from the World Economic Forum in Switzerland.

Mr Johnson said the banking industry required a "bigger and more public sense of duty".

The mayor also warned against a climate of "banker bashing" and over-regulation which could jeopardise the industry.

Mr Johnson said: "My feeling is that the banks and the bankers have a job now to repair their esteem in the eyes of the public."

But a culture of over-regulation could drive major financial sector employers out of London and put many more jobs at risk, he warned.

The mayor added that there were needy Londoners who could benefit from bankers' bonus money.

"I would like to see them assuage their consciences and do the right thing by London by giving their bonuses - and it is a disgrace that they are still getting (them) - by giving a share of their salaries to things like the Mayor's Fund for London, for helping disadvantaged children."



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