Hide Message

Updating the Resource Centre Digital Platform

The Business & Human Rights Resource Centre is at a critical point in its development. Our digital platform is home to a wealth of information on business and human rights, but hasn’t had a visual refresh for a number of years.

We will soon be updating the site to improve its usability and better serve the thousands of people that use our site to support their work.

Please take an advance peek at our new look, and let us know what you think!

Thank you,
Alex Guy, Digital Officer

Find Out More Hide Message

Commentary: BlackRock CEO exhorts corporations to develop "social conscience"; yet finance sector still lags on social responsibility

Author: David Kinley, Open Democracy, Published on: 22 April 2018

"Finance struggles to find a social conscience", 15 April 2018

...[F]inancier BlackRock CEO Larry Fink's latest letter exhorting...[c]orporations must secure a reputational "social license" to operate....

What is most reprehensible is the evident disregard banks pay to the consequences of their actions. The size of settlements in many of these cases...have become mere costs of doing business.... Some settlements are even tax-deductable!

...[T]itans of finance need to be sure that they are also putting their own house in order. Banks and other financial institutions still struggle to come to terms even with the relevancy of the language of human rights to their operations.

A 2017 discussion paper from...European banks...distances financiers from any responsibility for human rights abuses of their clients unless the bank's funding is "directly linked" to the rights-abusing action....

...[T]he many instances of skulduggery within finance seem to be more products of prevailing banking culture rather than something innate to the sector.

It is here that the sentiment behind Mr Fink's letter gains traction. It is volunteered from within the sector; not imposed from without. It challenges the status quo of finance's exceptionalist claims to be unhindered in its pursuit of profit (the 'golden goose' syndrome), and it confronts finance's entrenched political power (the revolving door between finance and government).

 

 

[also refers to BNP, Credit Suisse, HSBC, JP Morgan Chase, and Bank of America]

Read the full post here

Related companies: Bank of America BlackRock BNP Paribas Credit Suisse HSBC JPMorgan Chase