Hard to know where the line starts and ends for ‘faux-virtue-signalling’ businesses

Sky News contributor Judith Sloan has asked where the line starts and ends for “faux-virtue signalling” businesses as ANZ Bank CEO Shane Elliott bragged his bank no longer lent money to the coal industry.

“Where does that start and end frankly because depending on one’s moral position, there are some dodgy other businesses to which they lend,” she said.

“I want banks to be boring. I want them to behave appropriately for their customers and I don’t want them establishing agendas well beyond their remit.

“I’m afraid you see this right through the corporate world and it is a reflection of the people on those boards. They are prosecuting other agendas in effect and the only constraint really is the shareholders’ revolt.”

Meanwhile, Ms Sloan argued it was very convenient that state governments were able to use the excuse of COVID-19 to increase debt without committing electoral suicide.

“In many ways, I think the economy is looking perhaps a little better than people might have anticipated but as for government debt, those state treasurers are like kids in lolly shops,” she said.

“But when you look at the revenue hit of COVID – in the Queensland case, they said they were losing $15 billion of revenue – they’re spending $65-70 billion a year and that was 15 billion over four years.

“It’s a very convenient excuse to shower the money around.”

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