Systemic Operational Risk in the Australian Banking System: The Royal Commission

46 Pages Posted: 11 Jan 2023

Date Written: December 17, 2021

Abstract

The proceedings of the Royal Commission into Misconduct in the Banking, Superannuation and Financial Services Industry shocked the Australian public, the government and many in the financial industry. Over a period of just over a year the commission held open sessions in which directors and chief executive officers of the largest financial institutions in Australia were forensically questioned as to cases of serious misconduct in their firms and related entities. During the inquiry, many cases of misconduct were unearthed across a range of banking services (eg, consumer lending, including mortgage lending, car finance and credit cards; financial advice; and insurance and pensions). The most egregious of this misconduct was found in many financial institutions (in particular, in the largest banks, which together handle over 75% of banking products in Australia and New Zealand). The commission concluded that the financial institutions identified in the proceedings were at fault and that remediation would have to be paid to any customers harmed. This paper describes the role of the commission, documents some of the most prominent cases of misconduct, which it summarizes in terms of operational risk losses (using Turner’s framework for analyzing organizational disasters) and also details some egregious examples of operational risk events not covered by the commission. This paper can be seen as an analysis of the individual case studies of misconduct as identified by the Commission.

Keywords: Royal Commission into Misconduct in the Banking, Superannuation and Financial Services Industry, Australia, operational risk, Basel II, systemic operational risk, Turner’s framework

Suggested Citation

McConnell, Patrick, Systemic Operational Risk in the Australian Banking System: The Royal Commission (December 17, 2021). Journal of Operational Risk, Vol. 17, No. 4, 2022, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=4321702

Patrick McConnell (Contact Author)

Macquarie University ( email )

North Ryde
Sydney, New South Wales 2109
Australia

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