LONDON--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Financial institutions did not empower their risk management functions enough to curb the activities of risk takers which played a major role in the near collapse of the international financial system in 2008, according to a report from the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) co-sponsored by insurer, ACE European Group (ACE).
The risk management function within organisations appeared to lack the authority needed to take decisive and necessary action. The report, based on in-depth interviews with leading participants from the financial services sector and independent risk experts, explores the lessons learnt and recommends some practical steps financial institutions should now take to facilitate recovery and the rebuilding of trust.
Andrew Kendrick, CEO and Chairman of ACE European Group, said: “The role and scope of the risk management function has matured significantly however, following the financial crisis, many people were asking if more should have been done in terms of empowering risk managers to rein in the excesses of risk-takers.”
Kendrick continued: “Events have highlighted just how important the role of the risk manager is and we believe the steps highlighted in the report are important to help redress the balance between risk taking in the drive for profit within an organisation and risk management.”
While the function’s shortcomings may have contributed to the financial turmoil, there are some very specific lessons that can be learnt that place the risk management function in a strong position to help avoid similar problems in the future. A series of 10 measures are put forward in the report covering the role, position and levels of expertise needed in the risk management function through to the structures and systems used.
The central conclusion of the report is that, while many institutions are already reappraising their internal risk management procedures, there is often a far more fundamental question to be addressed relating to the actual culture of the organisation. The question is whether the individual concerns of risk managers have until now all too often been marginalised. Only by adopting the steps suggested, the report says, can institutions start to overcome the challenges they face in providing an effective risk management capability for the 21st century.
Managing risk in perilous times: Practical steps to accelerate recovery
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Notes to Editors
The measures put forward in the report include:
About the research
The research for this report is based on a series of in-depth interviews with senior risk professionals and independent experts, combined with a process of desk research that comprised a review of current literature on risk management. Interviews and research were conducted by the Economist Intelligence Unit.
ACE European Group has established branch offices in 20 countries across Europe, Freedom of Services permission to provide insurance services to clients in 30 European countries and affiliates in Egypt, Bahrain, Pakistan, Russia and South Africa.
Part of the ACE Group of Companies, ACE European Group comprises the operations of ACE Europe, ACE Global Markets and ACE Tempest Re Group. ACE Europe provides a range of tailored Property and Casualty, Accident and Health and Personal Lines solutions for a diverse range of clients. ACE Global Markets (AGM) is ACE’s specialty international business, underwriting through ACE’s Lloyd’s Syndicate 2488 and ACE European Group Limited. Specialty lines include excess and surplus lines business, Marine, Aviation, Energy and Political Risk as well as Property, Financial Lines and Accident and Health. Additional information on ACE European Group can be found at www.aceeuropeangroup.com.
The ACE Group of Companies is a global leader in insurance and reinsurance serving a diverse group of clients. Headed by ACE Limited (NYSE:ACE), the ACE Group conducts its business on a worldwide basis with operating subsidiaries in more than 50 countries. Additional information can be found at: www.acelimited.com
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