Few takers for Cantona's run on banks
A small group of activists in Paris emptied their bank accounts yesterday in a muted response to a call by French soccer icon Eric Cantona to vent their anger against leading banks and bailouts.
It did not appear to prompt the huge bank runs that some internet-based anti-capitalist groups had hoped for, however, and bankers and some economists warned against heeding the call. Cantona has also come in for criticism.
Activists had seized on former Manchester United star Cantona's call in October for depositors to empty their bank accounts. They suggest signing up with co-operative banks and rejecting major banks that were given bailouts and that are often blamed for the global financial crisis.
About a dozen people marched in costumes yesterday in Paris and withdrew money from a branch of Societe Generale.
They then opened accounts with a nearby branch of Credit Cooperatif bank, considered more ethically responsible because it pledges not to have any subsidiaries in tax havens.
Cantona said millions of people could help to spark a revolution by withdrawing all their money from their accounts.