Banks should take full responsibility for acting ethically and properly rather than waiting for regulatory bodies to intervene, a senior official believes.
Hector Sants, the outgoing chief executive of the Financial Services Authority (FSA), feels that professionals in the UK banking industry should put all their effort into doing the right thing, as opposed to focusing solely on their pay packets.
During Mr Sants' final speech as the leader of the FSA - a body that acts under the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000 but will be scrapped next year - delivered yesterday (24 April), he asked: "Should all of our conduct and behaviour be driven by pure financial incentives?"
"It should not solely be about how much we earn but also about how much we care for the markets' users and their wellbeing," he added.
Mr Sants went on to say that boards of banks need to match the commitment of regulators if the system is to recover fully in the wake of the recession.
By Gary Cooper