SFC: financial institutions must focus on ethics

Author: Ashley Lee | Published: 18 Jun 2014

James Shipton, executive director of intermediaries at the Securities and Futures Commission (SFC), has urged financial institutions to focus on ethics. He also revealed that the regulator will pay closer attention to banks’ culture and decision-making structures.

Speaking at a forum to introduce the Asia Capital Markets Institute, a new organisation promoting professionalism and best practices in the Asian capital markets, Shipton stressed the importance of market integrity and corporate culture following the financial crisis.

Regulatory responses to the crisis have largely focused on prudential and market structure rules. But that won’t prevent another financial crisis without cultural change. A focus on ethics is also needed to improve public trust in the financial system.

"I subscribe to the view that the financial industry has – both collectively and individually – over many years, surrendered an ethical standard for a legal one," he said, adding that a legal standard is...