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The City now, the City past

Sad and infuriating: Bob Diamond and the Barclays bank executives have questions to answer over the rigging of Libor rates.

. . .'My Word is my Bond' - was the unspoken motto of the City. There were cheats and scoundrels; but until recent times these were the exception, and their activities were systematically marginalised by the honest houses which formed the central conduit of the City's affairs. English commerce in general, and the City in particular, were vivid illustrations of the thesis defended in recent years by Francis Fukuyama, that trust is an integral component of economic success. All long-term enterprise and all creative risk-taking depend upon an element of trust; and as the network of mutually trusting businesses expands, so does the wealth of each of them. -Roger Scruton

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