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Implications for Corporate Governance Examples

The Global Financial Crisis 2007/08

  • Corporate recklessness and negligence among some of the world's biggest banks caused the worst global recession for decades, including the effective bankruptcies of entire nations, such as Iceland, Ireland, Spain, Cyprus and Greece.

In 2013 no criminal charges had been brought against any bank directors, although at least one knighthood was voluntarily forfeited, and a tiny fraction of a single percent of executive personal bonus payments and share options rewards was returned.

In 2013 much of the world was still awaiting full recovery from the global financial collapse and the resulting full-blown economic depression, and governments and regulatory authorities were continuing to debate how it all went wrong and how best to ensure that it could not happen again.

  • Almost without exception, the scores of culpable bank directors continue to live in great luxury, apparently completely free from the risk of prosecution or any sort of retribution, holding on to their illicitly gained fortunes and pensions, and many actually still working as corporate directors and consultants being paid more in a year than most people earn in a lifetime.

If ever there were a warning that no amount of Corporate Governance legislation will ever prevent gross stupidity and rampant greed among directors of banks, this catastrophic series of corporate disasters is almost certainly such a warning.