How David Murray plans to make AMP's management more accountable

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  • AMP chair David Murray says the board has in the past been swamped by paperwork.
  • This has meant less time spent on strategy.
  • He also wants to ensure both the board and the management are more accountable.

David Murray, the new chair of AMP, wants to make the board of directors and the management of the financial services giant more accountable.

He replaced Catherine Brenner in June after she and the CEO, Craig Meller, stepped down following revelations in the financial services royal commission that AMP made false and misleading statements to corporate regulator ASIC about fees it charged customers for advice not given.

Last week AMP launched a program to repair its reputation and “earn back trust”, by compensating customers for lost earnings, strengthening risk management systems and controls, and cutting fees on its superannuation products.

“I think the board’s got to conduct itself in a way that it looks to the CEO for everything,” Murray told the Australian Financial Review in an interview.

Murray, a former CEO of the Commonwealth Bank, says the board had in the past been swamped by paperwork, leaving little time to debate strategic issues.

He pointed to the ASX corporate governance principles, and the need for an array of board committees, as a cause of this.

“I’m not excusing anything and I’m not looking for a scapegoat at AMP,” he told the AFR. “It has to fix itself. But these principles don’t help at all.”

AMP is still searching for a new CEO.

The company’s shares last traded at $3.515, down more than a third from a 12-month high of $5.49.

Murray chaired the Financial System Inquiry, which reported to the Federal Government in December 2014. He also served as inaugural Chairman of the Australian Future Fund from 2006 to 2012.

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