Vincent Boland: We need to take banks out of the crosshairs of populist politicians – for everyone’s sake

Italy’s arbitrary windfall tax shook confidence in the entire economy. Do we really want to follow suit, just as banks are gaining a modicum of equilibrium?

Giorgia Meloni: The Italian government earlier this month to impose a windfall tax on the profits of the country’s banks on the grounds that those profits are the fruit of ‘unfair margins’. Picture: Getty

Why would any sane person want to be a banker? More than any other industry, banks are the targets of abuse, political interference, arbitrary taxation, demonisation by people who should know better, and accusations that the profits they are making in today’s business and financial environment are somehow illegitimate. It is time to shout stop.

Hating the banks is as old as the hills, but the notion has acquired a particularly jagged edge and a ...