The body tasked with improving behaviour in the UK’s scandal-hit banking industry has appointed a panel including a bishop, a trade unionist and a human rights campaigner to see the job through.
The Banking Standards Board, created last year, said a diverse group of people had been selected to start the long road to winning back the public’s trust, lost in the wake of the financial crisis.
Dame Colette Bowe, the former telecoms regulator and chair of the board, said: “Trust in the system has been badly damaged and it’s no surprise that the public expects change after everything that has happened.
“Banks recognise the urgent need to raise their game and build the necessary momentum for change. It won’t happen overnight and it will be an uncomfortable journey, but the time has come to win back trust.”
The 14-strong board includes David Urquhart, the bishop of Birmingham, Sir Brendan Barber, the former general secretary of the TUC, the Institute for Fiscal Studies chief Paul Johnson, and Baroness O’Neill, chair of the UK’s Equality and Human Rights Commission.
The reputation of the UK banking sector has been left in tatters following the financial crisis, as the culture of excessive risk-taking and big bonuses was laid bare. The rigging of interbank lending markets and foreign exchange, as well as the HSBC Swiss tax scandal, have further cast a shadow.
Lord McFall, the former Labour MP who was chairman of the Treasury select committee, has also joined the board.
Alison Cottrell, a Treasury official, will join later in April as the BSB’s first chief executive.
The board also features five bankers, including HSBC’s UK chief executive, António Simões, Citigroup’s UK boss, James Bardrick, and Morgan Stanley International’s chief operating officer, Clare Woodman.
Bowe said the board had been selected to highlight the culture, competence, and patterns of behaviour across the retail, investment and commercial banking sectors.
It is expected to give its verdict on the progress of banks in improving standards and put the spotlight on remaining concerns by the end of the year.
This article was written by Angela Monaghan, for theguardian.com on Thursday 2nd April 2015 09.11 Europe/Londonguardian.co.uk © Guardian News and Media Limited 2010