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“Not now, Stacey!” BNP banker wins discrimination claim

Online Published Date : 07 November 2019 | Appeared in issue: Vol 32 No 3 - 25 October 2019

A female banker who earned vastly less than a male colleague on the same level has had her gender discrimination claim upheld by the Employment Tribunal. The panel also commented that a witch’s hat left on her desk by colleagues was “an inherently sexist act”, while her manager’s repeated dismissal of her questions was “demeaning” and “belittling”. Will the regulator act upon its stated interest in non-financial misconduct? asks Denis O’Connor.

Why the SMCR won’t work

Online Published Date : 08 November 2019 | Appeared in issue: Vol 32 No 3 - 25 October 2019

Regulators have notoriously struggled to pierce the ‘accountability firewall’ and hold senior individuals to account for egregious failures at our major financial institutions. The Senior Managers and Certification Regime tackles the problem of ill-defined responsibilities, which so often has enabled individuals to dodge charges of personal culpability. But is the issue with the rulebook or its implementation? And will the new regime still allow senior staff to pass the buck to their underlings and claim that they took all ‘reasonable steps’? Adam Samuel argues that the Senior Managers Regime and COCON change nothing except the volume of paperwork.

Enforcement outlook – firms assailed by rising fines

Online Published Date : 08 November 2019 | Appeared in issue: Vol 32 No 3 - 25 October 2019

In an ambitious strategy, the Financial Conduct Authority has bitten off significantly more investigations, is keeping firms and individuals under investigation for longer, and meting out stiffer penalties. But – while the Senior Managers and Certification Regime may be deterring misconduct – its efficacy in holding senior individuals to account for breaches remains uncertain. By Jonathan Cary and Lucy Kerr.

Compliance overruled

Online Published Date : 08 November 2019 | Appeared in issue: Vol 32 No 3 - 25 October 2019

Compliance teams are at the sharp end of office politics, as they fight to be taken seriously by their superiors and by the teams whose work they are monitoring. So, where does the balance of power lie now? And what are the prospects for the influence of compliance officers? Neasa MacErlean reports.

CP19/25 tackles pension transfers – an arcane and troubled topic

Online Published Date : 08 November 2019 | Appeared in issue: Vol 32 No 3 - 25 October 2019

A large percentage of customers advised to transfer their pensions from schemes that offer safeguarded benefits should not have done so, the regulator believes. The Financial Conduct Authority’s latest intervention in the provisions governing this highly technical area addresses some recurring problems, says Adam Samuel. However, “The constant fiddling with these rules is not helping to make a complex area work properly.”

SMCR: embrace the catalyst for change

Online Published Date : 08 November 2019 | Appeared in issue: Vol 32 No 3 - 25 October 2019

Though the impact of the Senior Managers and Certification Regime is in its infancy, and the regulator has cited “persistent weaknesses”, there is evidence to suggest a concerted effort being made by financial institutions to address their much-publicised failings. Mark Turner discusses ongoing challenges, along with the opportunity presented by the regime to drive better outcomes.