Review: The End of Alchemy at Dragon Hall in Norwich

NNF16. Mervyn King. Photo: submitted.

NNF16. Mervyn King. Photo: submitted. - Credit: submitted

In the Dragon Hall, once a hub of Norwich's trade with Europe, Lord King spoke on the ideas behind The End of Alchemy, his recent book containing his reflections after the financial storms through which he had to navigate during a decade as Governor of the Bank of England.

Relaxed, quietly spoken and with a ready smile, Lord King explained his arguments clearly and without technical jargon in discussion with Charles Clarke, the former MP for Norwich South, at this well-attended event organised by Writers' Centre Norwich.

He spoke of his loss of faith in the academic theories of such as Maynard Keynes, reminding us of the key importance of confidence in the smooth functioning of the economy. If banks in difficulty wanted to continue to seek support from the Bank of England, then they should, he suggested, first establish credit-worthiness with deposits in more prosperous times.

In response to questions, he declined to be drawn on the In-Out Referendum, though he made an appeal for more and better information. Referring to the record of the last half-century, he was optimistic about possibilities of economic growth without environmental disaster. In conclusion, he praised sport as a means to personal fulfilment.

Christopher Smith

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