The Senate today passed the Banking Executive Accountability Regime (BEAR), imposing higher standards of behaviour on senior executives and board directors at banks.
From July banks will be required to register their senior executives and directors with financial regulator APRA, and provide greater clarity regarding their responsibilities.
If they misbehave, they lose their licence and, possibly, any bonuses due.
“Where these obligations are not met, APRA will be empowered to seek substantial fines, more easily disqualify individuals and ensure banks’ remuneration policies result in financial consequences for individuals,” says Treasurer Scott Morrison.
“These measures will incentivise good behaviour and ensure that banks and individuals are held to account where they fail to meet the standards expected of them.”
The registration of executives was part of a raft of measures, following a series of scandals at banks, announced last May in the federal budget.
Among them, a levy raising $6.2 billion over four years to help repair a hole in the federal government’s revenue.