Andrew Haldane said the Occupy movement had “helped stir” the financial reform (Bloomberg/Reuters)
Andrew Haldane said the Occupy movement had “helped stir” the financial reform (Bloomberg/Reuters)

The Occupy movement received praised from an unlikely source as a senior official from the Bank of England said the protestors had a key role role in the overhaul of the financial sector.

Andrew Haldane, executive director of financial stability at the central bank, said Occupy were right to attack the global financial system and had touched a "moral nerve" by staging the protests outside St Paul's.

Despite criticism that the Occupy protests was too vague in what they were actually trying to achieve, Haldane said their voice had been "loud and persuasive" and played a key role in the "fledgling financial reformation".

Occupy set up camp outside St Paul's having originally attempted to stage their protests outside the London Stock Exchange (LSE) following similar protest around the world regarding economic equality and corporate greed.

Speaking at a debate organised by Occupy Economics, a branch of the movement, Haldane told Occupy that "policymakers have listened and are acting in ways which will close those fault-lines. In fact, I want to argue that we are in the early stages of a reformation of finance, a reformation which Occupy has helped stir."

In a surprise endorsement for the group, Haldane added: "Occupy has been successful in its efforts to popularise the problems of the global financial system for one very simple reason - they are right."

Haldane told the protestors were correct to focus on financial inequality and greed at the hands of people in the financial district which played a part in the 2008 crash.

He said: "For sure, Occupy have touched a moral nerve in pointing to growing inequities in the allocation of wealth and incomes globally.

"The 99% certainly agrees. But so, more interestingly, do a high and rising share of the 1%.

"Yet it is the analytical, every bit as much as the moral, ground that Occupy has taken. For the hard-headed facts suggest that, at the heart of the global financial crisis, were and are problems of deep and rising inequality."

He added: "There is the quiet, but unmistakable, sound of a leaf being turned," he said.

"If I am right and a new leaf is being turned, then Occupy will have played a key role in this fledgling financial reformation."

Occupy was forced to leave St Paul's Cathedral in February after being evicted by the City of London Corporation.