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Over 70 banks sign charter to help improve gender balance in finance

Over 70 banks sign charter to help improve gender balance in finance

Over 70 banks and city companies have signed up to a charter to help improve gender balance in companies within the financial sector.

Leading banks, such as Lloyds and Barclays, have agreed to link their bosses’ bonuses to gender diversity targets in order to get more women working in senior roles.

Among the other companies that have signed up for the government’s Women in Finance Charter are insurance companies Legal & General and Prudential and fund managers Fidelity and Schroders.

Proposals

The charter consists of a number of proposals to help improve gender balance in financial companies, implementing recommendations made by Jayne-Anne Gadhia, chief executive of Virgin Money.

It comes after Gadhia found that there is a lack of women in executive roles, with women making up 23% of boards at City companies but just 14% of executive committees.

While the number of female directors in the UK has increased, the rise has been mainly in non-executive roles instead of in top management roles.

The charter now aims to make executive teams less male-dominated, with companies that have signed up committing to follow specific gender balancing proposals, such as setting targets for female representation in senior management roles and publishing annual progress reports against targets.

Balance

Commenting on the charter, Gadhia stated that it marked a ‘turning point’ for the financial industry, which is one of the most male-dominated industries. She said: “A growing number of chief executives and boards within the sector are taking the issue seriously and recognise the strong link between greater gender balance and improved productivity and performance.”


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