You may have seen the programme Teen Boob jobs: too much too young on the UK’s ITV2 television channel on 12 November. Let me make it plain from the outset that my viewing interest was that of a respected cosmetic surgeon. However, there were two revealing comments from the section covering “Toni” that may spike the interest of the finance world.
 Toni’s Mum: She can make decisions and half the time she does make right decisions. Toni’s best friend: How you gonna afford it and stuff?
Toni: I’m getting a loan.
TBF: You do realise you’ve got to pay extra money back?
Toni: Yeah, I know that. Obviously.
Some in the financial world might say that Toni’s Mum was the inspiration for Mr Mervyn King’s breaking cover yesterday with the motherly cautionary observation that:
"…if there were to be an adjustment of risk premia in equity markets with a fall in asset prices then that could have a bigger impact on the world economy."
That may be so: at least both parties are resigned to the inevitability that youth and the profit motive will have their heads – don’t entangle either with one’s own neuroses and paranoia even if a 50% success rate worries one a bit.
And indeed, why (else) should one? It is such bold and far-sighted personal development decisions as Toni’s that keep the economy humming along. This is, after all, recurring spending: Toni knows from her research that implants require decennial maintenance. And, as a surgeon in the field, I can personally attest to the fact that my discretionary spending is largely dependent on clear-thinking patients like Toni.
Which brings me to the second comment: what unexpected wisdom demonstrating an awareness and fiscal responsibility that those who lament the state of our youth must only find encouraging! And it may offer, if I may be so bold, an entirely new definition of asset-backed loans for investment bankers to work their securitization magic upon: unsqueezable breast-backed instruments can slide neatly into the breach left by sub-prime, AAA securities et al.
All well worth considering in light of the commerce ministry of China’s recent first-time public worries about reduced financing availability for silicone prosthesis procedures in the US (I can read between the lines of the FT-speak). If Toni and those she exemplifies were unable to invest in themselves the consequences may be dangerous for the carefully calibrated production capacity hundreds of laissez-pas faire mandarins have carrotted-and-sticked into place over there for so many years.
In all our interests, this is surely a test of chaos theory to be avoided.
With kind regards to you and your readers I remain,
Professor Sir “Siv” ABC Papier-Wobbler
FRS FRCS (Oxon), MDMS PhD (Cantab), FRCP FRCOG (Guadalahara), MS (Karachi), MS (Bangkok), B Litt (Phil), D Litt (Ottawa), B Sc (Liege)
PS/Here's an excerpt from the programme should you have you missed it: