The queen was in her counting house on Thursday afternoon, inspecting the Bank of England’s gold, as well as posing a few financial questions to the institution’s economic grandees.

The Royal, who famously asked "why did nobody notice it?" four years ago at the London School of Economics during a discussion on the 2008 financial crash, also suggested that the financial services authority (FSA) had become a bit "complacent" before the crisis.

queen bank

The Queen toured the vaults at the Threadneedle Street bank

"People had got a bit... lax, had they?" she asked in regards to the banking regulators.

"A lot was going on under the surface that perhaps regulators weren't so focussed on," one of the bank's economists responded.

"The Financial Services - what do they call themselves, the regulators - Authority, which was really quite new... it didn't have any teeth," she replied.

Touring with the Duke of Edinburgh, the royal again asked why no one predicted the 2008 financial crash and subsequent downturn.

Stepping forward to answer her majesty, Sujit Kapadia, who sits on the Bank's Financial Services Committee, offered a three-fold reason, likening the financial crisis to an earthquake, both being rare events that make them hard to predict.

queen bank

More than £197billion is stored in the Bank of England

"People thought markets were efficient, people thought regulation wasn't necessary," he added.

"Because the economy was stable there was this growing complacency. People didn't realise just how interconnected the system had become," he said lastly.

When the royals were told that the workers of the bank were there to prevent another such financial catastrophe, the Duke teased: "Is there another one coming?"

In response to the seeming criticism picked up by television cameras, the FSA released a statement:

"We've widely acknowledged that the regulatory approach before the financial crisis in 2008 was flawed and has since been completely changed.

"Parliament is now awaiting Royal Assent for the Financial Services Bill, which will determine the powers for the new regulators that will be created next year'"

During the tour, the Queen signed a million pound note for the Bank's guest book and was shown a banknote she had signed in 1937.

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  • Royal visit to the Bank of England

    Queen Elizabeth II tours the gold vault during her visit to the Bank of England in central London.

  • Royal visit to the Bank of England

    Queen Elizabeth II tours the gold vault during her visit to the Bank of England in central London.

  • Royal visit to the Bank of England

    Queen Elizabeth II and the Duke of Edinburgh arrive for their visit to the Bank of England in central London.

  • Royal visit to the Bank of England

    Queen Elizabeth II tours the gold vault during her visit to the Bank of England in central London.

  • Royal visit to the Bank of England

    Queen Elizabeth II tours the gold vault during her visit to the Bank of England in central London.

  • Royal visit to the Bank of England

    Queen Elizabeth II tours the gold vault during her visit to the Bank of England in central London.

  • Royal visit to the Bank of England

    Queen Elizabeth II tours the gold vault during her visit to the Bank of England in central London.

  • Royal visit to the Bank of England

    Queen Elizabeth II tours the gold vault during her visit to the Bank of England in central London.

  • Royal visit to the Bank of England

    Queen Elizabeth II tours the gold vault during her visit to the Bank of England in central London.

  • Royal visit to the Bank of England

    Queen Elizabeth II and the Duke of Edingburh looks at gold bars during their visit to the Bank of England in central London.

  • Royal visit to the Bank of England

    The Duke of Edinburgh with a 1m pound note during his visit to the Bank of England in central London.

  • Royal visit to the Bank of England

    Queen Elizabeth II waves during her visit to the Bank of England in central London.

  • Royal visit to the Bank of England

    Queen Elizabeth II during her visit to the Bank of England in central London.

  • Royal visit to the Bank of England

    Queen Elizabeth II waves during her visit to the Bank of England in central London.

  • Royal visit to the Bank of England

    Queen Elizabeth II views bank notes during her visit to the Bank of England in central London.

  • Royal visit to the Bank of England

    Queen Elizabeth II with Governor Sir Mervyn King during her visit to the Bank of England in central London.

  • Royal visit to the Bank of England

    Queen Elizabeth II and the Duke of Edingburh looks at gold bars during their visit to the Bank of England in central London.

  • Royal visit to the Bank of England

    Queen Elizabeth II views bank notes during her visit to the Bank of England in central London.

  • Royal visit to the Bank of England

    Governor Sir Mervyn King greets Queen Elizabeth II and the Duke of Edinburgh as they arrive for their visit to the Bank of England in central London.

  • Royal visit to the Bank of England

    Queen Elizabeth II talks to Sujit Kapadia during her visit to the Bank of England in central London.

  • Royal visit to the Bank of England

    Queen Elizabeth II talks to Sujit Kapadia during her visit to the Bank of England in central London.

  • Royal visit to the Bank of England

    Governor Sir Mervyn King greets Queen Elizabeth II and the Duke of Edinburgh as they arrive for their visit to the Bank of England in central London.

  • Royal visit to the Bank of England

    A 1m bank note that was seen by the Queen Elizabeth II during her visit to the Bank of England in central London.