Financial services companies challenged to sign up to gender diversity

Nicky Morgan, chair of the Treasury committee, has written to over 30 firms in the financial services industry challenging them to sign up to the women in finance charter or explain the reasons why they have not done so, in a bid to increase the pressure to improve gender diversity in the sector

The women in finance charter is a commitment by the Treasury and signatory firms to work together to build a more gender balanced and fair financial services industry. As of November 2017, the charter had achieved over 160 signatories, representing over 600,000 employees in the industry, which the Treasury says is around 50%.

Signatories make four pledges to promote gender diversity. They are: having one member of the senior executive team who is responsible and accountable for gender diversity and inclusion; setting internal targets for gender diversity in senior management; publishing progress annually against these targets in reports on the company’s website; and having an intention to ensure the pay of the senior executive team is linked to delivery against these internal targets on gender diversity.

Morgan said: ‘The progress of the women in finance charter is to be welcomed. The aim, however, must be to see all firms in the financial sector sign up to the charter and make a concerted effort to improve their gender diversity, particularly in senior roles.

‘Huge multi-nationals including Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan and UBS are yet to sign up to the charter, and if they don’t intend to do so, the Treasury committee wants them to explain why.’

Others on the list of 33 companies include BUPA, Metro Bank, Invesco Perpetual, Zopa and Vanguard Asset Management.

The firms have until 16 February to provide their response, setting out whether they will sign the Charter with the next cohort of signatories and if not, the reasons why.

Women in Finance Charter is here.

The Treasury committee Women in finance inquiry has a deadline for comments of 28 February.

Report by Pat Sweet

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