Not Making That Mistake Again

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"Listen people. I don't want to see anymore nonsense over crazy bonuses. I want you people going over compensation with a fine tooth comb. If Suzie Whatsherface in HR is giving out Girl Bears for the employees of the month, I want to know what the list price on those is. If there is a training video being shown for free during "Sensitivity Week," I want to know what the production cost on that film was and why employees aren't buying admission tickets. If there is some sort of parking validation scheme, I want to know the discount rate. C'mon, people. Get it together."
Fed Chief Calls for Scrutiny of Financial Pay [The New York Times]

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Banks Now Trying Extra Hard To Avoid Making The Rookie Mistakes That Mean Getting Caught Committing Fraud

Remember, earlier this summer, when a whole bunch of banks were sued over allegations their employees manipulated Libor? And Bob Diamond, CEO of the first, and so far only, bank to settle with regulators, lost his job, as did a bunch of his colleagues? And it was suggested that Barclays's offenses were but a drop in the bucket compared with those of UBS? And experts projected that this whole thing could cost the banks being investigated (of which there are many) tens of billions of dollars to make go away? And Nellie Diamond stopped Tweeting? As much fun as that's all been, a lot of firms would like to avoid going through it again, and to that end, have asked their compliance teams to run some workshops teaching employees how to keep things on the straight and narrow. For instance, while you might think that people would have mastered email by this point on the evolutionary chart-- specifically, that it never goes away and might be read again-- you would think wrong!  So the point is being hammered home in remedial electronic correspondence classes, particularly to those who'd previously not seen an issue with writing stuff like, "Anything for you, Big Boy" as a response to the request "Can you manipulate Libor for me today when you've a sec?" Also on the schedule-- mock happy hours with the team for members of the staff who can never seem to remember the appropriate response for when you're out at Punch Tavern and someone brings up "Holly with the cans who did me a solid by shaving 45 basis points off our submission." "Everyone is more paranoid, that's for sure," said one department head at a European investment bank, where the trading floor is festooned with posters reminding staff to report any suspicious behaviour. At his bank and at least one other European firm, executives said they were being asked to take part in an increasing number of behavioural coaching sessions, including simulations of pub outings. These were mainly done via webcasts, where participants act out conversations with colleagues where the talk turns to clients or office gossip, two bankers said. "You have to turn around and say, 'No, let's not talk about that'," said one. Culture Clean Up Follows Bankers To Bar [Reuters]