He goes on to discuss possible reasons why the building societies have done so badly as quoted companies.
Bradford and Bingley lived for 149 years as a mutual company. It lasted just eight years as a quoted firm. Halifax survived for 144 years as a mutual, but just 11 as a quoted company. Northern Rock lasted 157 years as a mutual, 11 as a quoted.
Not a single building society that demutualized in the 90s now survives as an independent company.
Does anyone see a pattern here?
On a personal note, my mortgage was originally with the Leeds Permanent. It was taken over by the Halifax, which soon afterwards demutualised and turned itself into a bank. I received shares which I promptly sold, despite being told by someone that keeping them was a "no brainer". I am feeling rather pleased with my judgement now.