"There was a monumental collective failure of which the Treasury was part"

Business quote of the day.

The Northern Rock building. Photograph: Getty Images.

There was a monumental collective failure of which the Treasury was part

Sir Nicholas Macpherson, the Treasury's most senior civil servant, tells the Public Accounts Committee that the government should have been quicker to nationalise Northern Rock. MPs are investigating claims that the taxpayers will end up losing £2bn from the collapse and rescue of the bank. Sir Nicholas said officials had failed to anticipate the seriousness of the crisis facing the bank during the summer of 2007.