BoE issues warning to insurers

The insurance industry is under the spotlight as the Bank of England has told insurance companies they need to improve their working culture after disclosures about sexual harassment and intimidation within the sector.

A letter from the Prudential Regulation Authority to executives of all general insurance companies stated: “Recent public reports relating to sexual harassment and bullying within the London market are of deep concern and it is clear that some firms have more work to do to improve aspects of corporate culture and individual behaviour.”

The letter went on to explain that company directors could face fines or bans if they break conduct rules, sending a fresh warning to the sector following a survey by Lloyd's of London in September. Canvassing some 6,000 employees, nearly one in 10 of respondents said they had witnessed sexual harassment in the past year and 22% said they had seen people in their organisation turn a blind eye to inappropriate behaviour.

In the Dear CEO letter, the PRA’s acting director of insurance supervision, Gareth Truran, wrote: “Recent public reports relating to sexual harassment and bullying within the London market are of deep concern and it is clear that some firms have more work to do to improve aspects of corporate culture and individual behaviour.”

He added: “These issues also raise broader questions about whether firms are promoting a culture where staff feel able to speak up about poor practices or unidentified risks within their organisations, including issues relating to a firm’s financial soundness.”

After the allegations were raised Lloyd’s set out to modernise its culture by barring people under the influence of drugs or alcohol, introducing lifetime bans for inappropriate behaviour and setting up a whistleblower hotline.

    Share Story:

Recent Stories