Pope proposes new financial order guided by ethics
July 7, 2009 4:38 PM ET
VATICAN CITY (AP) - Pope Benedict XVI called Tuesday for a new world financial order guided by ethics and the search for the common good, denouncing the profit-at-all-cost mentality blamed for bringing about the global financial meltdown.And then we get to the real crux of the story:
There is urgent need (for) a true world political authority" that can manage the global economy, guarantee the environment is protected, ensure world peace and bring about food security for the poor, he wrote.
The pope's focus on world finance raised questions about the state of the Vatican's own books.Maybe this is why they want reform. Are they running out of money for gas for the Pope-mobile?
The Vatican was implicated in the 1980s collapse of Banco Ambrosiano, in which the Vatican's bank was the major shareholder, and it agreed to pay $250 million to Ambrosiano's creditors, while denying any wrongdoing.
At the start of the meltdown in October, a top Vatican bank official assured that its deposits were safe and had no liquidity problems, saying the bank had stayed away from derivatives, the financial instruments blamed in part for the crisis.
Other officials have said 80 percent of the Vatican's investments are in low-yield government bonds and 20 percent in stocks and that the Vatican does not invest in companies that produce arms or contraceptives.
The Vatican in its annual financial statement issued Saturday said it ran a deficit in 2008 for the second straight year, posting a euro900,000 ($1.28 million) loss, compared with a loss of euro9.06 million a year earlier.