Investment banks 'must improve bribery systems'

30 March 2012

Several investment banks may face regulatory action after an official review established shortfalls in their anti-bribery and corruption (ABC) systems.

The Financial Services Authority (FSA) has published the findings of its thematic investigation into this part of the fiscal sector and found that a significant proportion of such firms were not properly abiding by the rules it had set previously.

From last August, the body analysed the business of 15 separate companies - including eight major global investment banks - to discover how they handled their ABC controls.

It was found that all these firms need to take additional action in the near future to improve their systems as, for example, around 50 per cent did not have an adequate ABC assessment plan in place.

Tracey McDermott, acting director of enforcement and financial crime at the FSA, commented: "Overall, despite the high profile of the issue, the investment banking sector has been too slow and too reactive in managing bribery and corruption risks."

By Asim Shah

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