December 02, 2015
Partners Barney Reynolds (London-FIA&FR) and Reena Agrawal Sahni (New York-FIA&FR) authored an article titled “Accountability: The Senior Managers and Beyond” that was recently published in The Clearing House’s Banking Perspective.
The article addresses the UK and US rules on the personal accountability of senior managers and others for misconduct and the potential for the extraterritorial impact of those rules. In the UK, the government is reforming its approach to supervising and taking enforcement action against individuals in senior management positions and individuals who are employed in positions where they could pose a risk ofsignificant harm to the firm or any of its clients. It remains to be seen how standards will develop to protect well-intentioned senior managers from being held responsible for their firms’ regulatory breaches. Regulators need to strike a balance between having effective rules and ensuring those rules are fair. Firms need likewise to balance the structuring of reporting lines to allow senior managers sufficient oversight of relevant business units with ensuring organizational and operational efficiency. Although the US does not have a framework in place that is as formal as that in the UK, there is also an increased US focus on individual accountability.