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The Dark Side of Giving Voice to Values : Do Not Throw Pollyannna Whistleblowers Under the Bus

01 October 2023
Knowledge Base

by Caroline Raat

“Giving Voice to Values” (GVV) by dr. M.C. Gentile is a popular, but theoretically not well-founded educational program and approach to values-driven leadership development in business education and the workplace. Rather than focusing on ethical analysis and philosophical reasoning, GVV concentrates on ethical implementation, addressing the question: “How can I express my values effectively in a professional setting?” The foundation of GVV is the premise that most individuals already know what is right, but they struggle with how to express and act on their values in the workplace, especially when faced with opposition or pressure. It is designed to help individuals develop the skills, confidence, and habit of voicing and enacting their values. In many ways, GVV is a glorified assertiveness training, based on pseudoscience.
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Risk in Focus 2024: Hot topics for internal auditors

28 September 2023
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For the past eight years, Risk in Focus has sought to highlight key risk areas for internal auditors when preparing their independent risk assessment work, annual planning and audit scoping. The 2024 research report has revealed a looming poly-crisis as a series of high-impact risk events occurring simultaneously and exacerbating a multitude of interconnected risks. The report calls on boards to collaborate with internal auditors to navigate the poly-crisis by having an unwavering focus on organisational resilience and working together to respond rapidly to the myriad of immediate and fast-moving risks businesses now face. Continue reading…

Commission re-imposes €376.36 million fine on Intel for anticompetitive practices

26 September 2023
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The European Commission has re-imposed a fine of around €376.36 million on Intel for a previously established abuse of dominant position in the market for computer chips called x86 central processing units (‘CPUs’). Intel engaged in a series of anticompetitive practices aimed at excluding competitors from the relevant market in breach of EU antitrust rules. In 2009, the Commission fined Intel €1.06 billion after finding that Intel abused its dominant position in the market for x86 CPUs. The Commission decision was based on findings that Intel had engaged in two specific forms of illegal practices by: (i) giving wholly or partially hidden rebates to computer manufacturers on condition that they bought all, or almost all, their x86 CPUs from Intel (so-called ‘conditional rebates’); and (ii) paying computer manufacturers to halt or delay the launch of specific products containing competitors’ x86 CPUs and to limit the sales channels available to these products (so-called ‘naked restrictions’). Continue reading…

Monetary and fiscal policy-mix addressing the disease of inflation

22 September 2023
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Francois Villeroy de Galhau

Let me start with good news about a favourite Eurofi topic: banking regulation and Basel 3. I say it as BIS Chair and former chair of GHOS: we had in Monday an important GHOS meeting in Basel, and we unanimously welcomed the decisive progress made this year in the implementation of Basel 3. By 2025, all jurisdictions – including Europe and – yes – the US – should have implemented it in a broad compliance with the standards. I know each banking industry, on both sides of the Atlantic, tends to consider that the other side has undue advantages. It’s simply not right, and our motto is now straightforward: let us now close this page, and implement the European compromise, no less and no more. No less as some banks would perhaps still dream of, and no more as some theoreticians of regulation would perhaps imagine. And we should now turn to the priority learned from the banking turmoil: “strengthening supervisory effectiveness” [*1] rather than focusing on further regulation. Let me now turn to my theme which is the policy mix to fight our main economic disease: inflation. Continue reading…

Faster green transition would benefit firms, households and banks, ECB economy-wide climate stress test finds

21 September 2023
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The European Central Bank (ECB) has published the results of its second economy-wide climate stress test. The results show that the best way to achieve a net-zero economy for firms, households and banks in the euro area is to accelerate the green transition to a rate that is faster than under current policies. “We need more decisive policies to ensure a speedier transition towards a net-zero economy in line with the goals of the Paris Agreement. Moving at the current pace will push up risks and costs for the economy and financial system. There is a clear need for speed on the road to Paris,” says ECB Vice-President Luis de Guindos. Continue reading…

Out of control national debt in the United States hangs over the market like a sword of Damocles

20 September 2023
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by Michel Klompmaker

We recently spoke with Twan Houben about the possible impact of the enormously increased national debt in the United States. Twan Houben is concerned with crisis management, hence his special interest in the phenomenon of national debt on the other side of the Ocean. Then what’s going on? According to Marketwatch, the national debt there currently amounts to 33 trillion US dollars. To put that number into perspective, three years ago that was 23 trillion US dollars. It is not rocket science to calculate that with the increased interest rates in the last period, serious problems can arise if new loans have to be taken out to finance the national debt. But what are the consequences in Europe? Continue reading…

Neil Esho: Stick to the Core Principles

18 September 2023
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On 13 September, Neil Esho, Secretary General of the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision, at the Eurofi Financial Forum 2023, Santiago de Compostela. When asked how he went bankrupt, Mike Campbell, a Scottish war veteran who features in Hemingway’s novel, The Sun Also Rises, responded: “two ways: gradually and then suddenly”. This description of financial failure – clearly not new – is also an apt description that sums up many an episode of banking distress. This includes the failure of a number of US regional banks earlier this year, and the merger of two large Swiss G-SIBs. Continue reading…

ESMA sees prevailing market uncertainty as downside risks rise

14 September 2023
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The European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA), the EU’s financial markets regulator and supervisor, has recently published the second Trends, Risks and Vulnerabilities (TRV) Report of 2023. ESMA sees that financial markets are adapting to the new economic environment of durably higher inflation and interest rates, however risks remain high in ESMA’s remit. Markets are set to remain very sensitive to potential deteriorations in economic fundamentals or risks in the financial sector. Continue reading…

Taxation: new proposals to simplify tax rules and reduce compliance costs for cross-border businesses

13 September 2023
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Yesterday, the European Commission adopted a key package of initiatives to reduce tax compliance costs for large, cross-border businesses in the European Union. The proposal, called “Business in Europe: Framework for Income Taxation” (BEFIT), will make life easier for both businesses and tax authorities by introducing a new, single set of rules to determine the tax base of groups of companies. This will reduce compliance costs for large businesses who operate in more than one Member State and make it easier for national tax authorities to determine which taxes are rightly due. The new, simpler rules could reduce tax compliance costs for businesses operating in the EU by up to 65%. Continue reading…

Central banks at the crossroads

12 September 2023
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by Luiz Pereira da Silva,

Central banks, and central bankers, stand at a crossroads. They face not one, but five major forks in the road. In line with their mandate and in addition to their known achievements, central banks, in the 21st century need to reflect carefully on how the new challenges could affect their role. I will list five of these forks: (1) the re-emergence of inflation; (2) climate change; (3) inequality; (4) digital financial innovation; and (5) artificial intelligence. As you know, modern central banks have been successful because they have been capable of strengthening their analytical thinking when facing challenges in the past, balancing risks properly and choosing the best path, even if that path looked challenging. Now, the many consequential issues that we face imply that central banks will have to carefully identify and analyse the paths they mean to tread. Continue reading…