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Off the record

"I have told senior management that if they insist on taking multi-billion dollar bonuses this year, they might as well hire a bodyguard because they could end up getting shot"

A well-connected banker offers some worrying advice

"If a leader is ill or suffering from stress, they should be allowed a break to heal themselves. The best steel is tempered steel"

A hedge fund manager speaks out on behalf of all stressed financiers, and not just Lloyds CEO António Horta-Osório

"We’ve had meetings with the ECB and with other banking regulators in the weeks since October 26 and none of them know how to make these sovereign guarantees work"

One banker despairs that the eurozone leaders grand plan to restore bank funding won’t work

"Italy is beyond the point of no return in being able to fund itself on any scale in the market, so must fund itself on supported terms either through the EFSF or eventually through loans from the IMF. The market won’t supply funding on sustainable terms until it sees significant progress on fiscal reform and structural reforms. Italy will be cut off from the market for a couple of years and maybe longer"

This market strategist thinks Italy passed the tipping point months ago

"The Bank of Spain should have been much more severe with the savings banks and acted much more quickly. It now needs to clearly classify which savings banks will survive and which will not"

One Madrid-based financier wants certainty from his central bank

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