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UK to Crack Down on Non-Financial Misconduct

UK to Crack Down on Non-Financial Misconduct

by Starling Insights

Starling Insights Editorial Board

Oct 04, 2023


As a part of the UK Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and Prudential Regulation Authority's (PRA) proposed Diversity & Inclusion (D&I) regulatory framework, the regulators are seeking to crack down on sexual harassment and other instances of non-financial workplace misconduct. These reforms follow widely reported allegations of sexual misconduct against hedge fund manager Crispin Odey that led to his removal from his firm, Odey Asset Management.  

The proposal introduces new guidance on addressing "serious instances of harassment and bullying" and incorporates non-financial misconduct into the FCA's "fit and proper" test for financial services employees. 

"Financial services workplaces need to be safe places for women," FCA CEO Nikhil Rathi said in an interview. "Companies that do not have an environment where serious issues like that are dealt with and addressed are unlikely to be companies that have an environment which is healthy from a risk management perspective. We want to make sure that we are proactive around that."

In June, the Financial Times published allegations from 19 women who reported sexual harassment, assault, or inappropriate behavior by Odey between 1985 and 2021. This has prompted questions regarding the FCA's oversight, as the regulator had been investigating separate claims of misconduct against Odey since 2021.

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