IMF Chief: More women are needed at the top of finance

International Monetary Fund (IMF) managing director Christine Lagarde has called on financial institutions to embrace inclusivity by appointing more women to leadership roles.

Lagarde was speaking at a conference with US Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen, who became the first female chair in its 100 year history last year, where she posed the question, “What would have happened if Lehman Brothers had been Lehman Sisters?”

Talking about the wider issue of inclusivity in banking, she said: “One clear solution is to set a strong tone at the top of the institution—establishing a culture where ethical behavior is rewarded and where lapses in ethical integrity are not tolerated. More women leaders would also help. Several studies have shown that female leadership is more inclusive.” Earlier this week RBS set a target for a third of management positions to be held by women in 2020, while a study last month said investment banking are staff the most welcoming to diversity.

She also urged regulators to continue demonstrating pay restraint on banker’s bonuses: “Incentives related to compensation practices need to change, so that rewards are no longer so much tied to myopic actions and excessive risk-taking.” 

 Image courtesy of Flickr user imf.


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