FSPB publishes code of ethics for financial services sector


Tan Sri Azman Hashim, Chairman, AmBank Group

KUALA LUMPUR: The Financial Services Professional Board (FSPB), an industry-led initiative launched in Kuala Lumpur by Bank Negara and the Securities Commission in September 2014, has officially published its code of ethics (CoE) for the financial services industry.

FSPB chairman Tan Sri Azman Hashim said in a statement that the CoE outlined a set of five broad fundamental principles to which institutions and individuals in the financial services industry should adhere to. The five principles are competence, integrity, fairness, confidentiality and objectivity.”

He said the code was drafted in a manner that made it easy to use and accessible to all. 

The FSPB CoE is the culmination of consultations with a total of 280 organisations consisting of financial institutions, industry associations, professional bodies and major international regulatory bodies in Malaysia, Singapore, Hong Kong, India, Switzerland, UK and the US. The publication of the CoE is accompanied by feedback received from stakeholders demonstrating transparency in formulating the code.  

“A strong culture of professionalism anchored on a set of core ethical principles will contribute towards a more resilient financial services industry. It enhances the overall reputation and public trust in the industry,” Azman said.

“The FSPB CoE aims to raise the bar of professionalism and ethics across the financial services industry to help restore, maintain and enhance public trust in the sector. We hope the FSPB Code of Ethics will be accepted not only in Malaysia but also internationally.”

The Code of Ethics

Organisations and individuals across the financial services industry shall continuously uphold and abide by the following ethical principles that are vital to the achievement of a high standard of professionalism and ethics across the industry: 

Principle 1: Competence

Individuals across the financial services industry shall develop and maintain the relevant knowledge, skills and behaviour to ensure that their activities are conducted professionally and proficiently. This includes acting with diligence, as well as obtaining, and regularly updating, the appropriate qualifications, training, expertise and practical experience.

Principle 2: Integrity 

Organisations and individuals across the financial services industry shall be honest and open in all their dealings. This includes behaving in an accountable and trustworthy manner, and avoiding any acts that might damage the reputation of, or bring discredit to the industry at any time.

Principle 3: Fairness

Organisations and individuals across the financial services industry shall act responsibly and embrace a culture of fairness and transparency. This includes treating those with whom they have professional relationships with respect and ensuring that they consider the impact of their decisions and actions towards all stakeholders. 

Principle 4: Confidentiality

Organisations and individuals across the financial services industry shall protect the confidentiality and sensitivity of information provided to them. This includes using it for its intended purposes only and not divulging information to any unauthorised persons, including third parties, without the necessary consent from those involved unless disclosure is required by law or regulation. 

Principle 5: Objectivity

Organisations and individuals across the financial services industry shall not allow any conflict of interest, bias or undue influence of others to override their business and professional judgment. They shall declare, to those concerned, all matters that could impair their objectivity.

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