The Beauty of Ethics: Towards Re-Establishing Trust in the Financial Sector

Pensamiento Social No.6, 2019

26 Pages Posted: 10 Mar 2020

See all articles by Sir William Blair

Sir William Blair

Queen Mary University of London; Centre for Commercial Law Studies

Clara Barbiani

Queen Mary, University of London

Date Written: December 2019

Abstract

There is beauty in ethics, which in one of its declinations can be translated into this concept: there is beauty in undertaking the right action, even when nobody is watching. Within this, we can see an antidote to past failures, and an element necessary to attract the change that laws and regulations can only ever be partially successful in achieving. What would a client look for in the financial system in order to hold it trustworthy? The underlying question to be addressed is to what extent laws and regulation are adequate in furthering ethical conduct and decision-making within the financial industry upon which trust rests. The focus is on the importance of ethical decision-making to uphold a client’s rights. The paper considers the role of ethics within financial institutions, and how codes of conduct encourage ethical behavior, explaining the nexus that often exists between a firm’s culture and a country’s tradition and ideologies. The last section discusses the role of ethics at the individual level, focusing on the conduct of the professionals working in the industry.

Keywords: codes of conduct, codes of ethics, financial inclusion, business ethics, religion, customs, standards of conduct, leadership, integrity, trust, financial institutions, corporate culture, compliance

JEL Classification: I38, I24, I25, G01, G02, E58, D23, K23

Suggested Citation

Blair, Sir William and Barbiani, Clara, The Beauty of Ethics: Towards Re-Establishing Trust in the Financial Sector (December 2019). Pensamiento Social No.6, 2019 , Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3537182 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3537182

Sir William Blair

Queen Mary University of London ( email )

Mile End Rd
Mile End Road
London, London E1 4NS
United Kingdom

Centre for Commercial Law Studies ( email )

67-69 Lincoln’s Inn Fields
London, WC2A 3JB
United Kingdom

HOME PAGE: http://www.qmul.ac.uk/law/staff/blair.html

Clara Barbiani (Contact Author)

Queen Mary, University of London ( email )

67-69 Lincoln’s Inn Fields
London
United Kingdom

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