Recovery Special Podcast: Ian Marcus on Lehman, “spreadsheet hell” and who read the cycle best

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Marcus Pic“The art of good banking isn’t lending money. It’s making sure it gets repaid.”

Those are the words of former Credit Suisse head of investment banking Ian Marcus, who spoke in a wide-ranging interview on the Property Week Podcast to mark the five-year anniversary of Lehman Brothers’ collapse.

Marcus, who was chair of the Bank of England’s Commercial Property Forum at the time, and is now a senior adviser to US bank Wells Fargo, said the industry had an “obligation” to see what lessons could be learnt from the downturn.

He said: “We’ll never get rid of the cyclicality, but hopefully we can avoid some of the excesses by smoothing it.”

Looking back at the culture of over-exuberant lending in the banking crisis, he said that that “there were words of caution and warning signs but it was in a typical low-key British way”.

“It was about being invited for cucumber sandwiches and maybe hinting that things were perhaps moving too fast,” he said.

Property Week Podcast 12 – Part 1: Credit Suisse’s Ian Marcus, City AM editor Allister Heath and the hot news from Property Week editor Giles Barrie.

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PW Podcast: ian Marcus and Alistair Heath

In episode one of the first anniversary edition of Property Week’s Podcast Ian Marcus, head of real estate banking at Credit Suisse, talks to Property Week’s podcast host James Max about what is happening in the world of bank lending, his views as chairman of the Bank of England’s property forum on what the public and private sectors need to do to aid recovery, and discusses whether more regulation and restraint is required from the finance world.

Allister Heath, editor of City AM, the free business newspaper, also pops in to challenge the belief that free newspapers are in trouble, discusses the UK economy and looks at what he has seen happening in the property sector, the banks and the City of London.

And Property Week editor Giles Barrie goes over what is making the news this week.

Catch the second episode of the podcast next week for DTZ head of UK retail Mark Williams and Secret Millionaire and entrepreneur Dominic List.

Property Week Podcast transcription

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