The Credit Crunch may well be one of the defining moments of a generation, it has certainly altered the way many view investment and retail banks. The institute of which I have been a member for a number of years (The Institute of Financial Planning) merged this month with CISI – the Chartered Institute for Securities and Investment having been agreed in September.
One of the many good things about the IFP, who I regard(ed) as the best of the best, was the willingness of other members (in theory competitors) to share best practice. Indeed many have become valuable sources of wisdom for me (in what I hope is a two-way street) and have become professional friends. Understandably, many of us were surprised and perhaps concerned about the changes that the merger may bring about. After all, investment bankers were part of the problem that caused the credit crunch and haven’t we now just “got into bed with them”?
In order to migrate my membership over to CISI I had to pass an ethics test. Being candid, it has always been something of a struggle to find and complete any CPD type stuff for the IFP on the topic of ethics – for which there is a required minimum of 2 hours a year (no that doesn’t mean being ethical for 2 hours a year, but demonstrating learning and application of the broad topic of ethical dilemmas).
I followed the online resource and was presented with a series of case studies, which I am pleased to say were interesting and based in the world of real life rather than a purely theoretical one. The overwhelming perspective being that if others follow the same path, I have had my faith and optimism significantly increased in the investment world, which if I’m being honest, I didn’t have before.
I have been greatly deflated and frustrated by the greed and bullying exhibited by large corporations and the relentless pursuit of gain without any thought of others. My opinion of the investment world, is almost certainly not that much different from yours. A recent film that captured this is called “99 Homes”. It stars Andrew Garfield, who you may have seen as Spiderman (perhaps not) or as Eduardo Saverin in The Social Network (the film about Facebook). Anyway, Garfield plays a character that has his home repossessed and, well… shall we say something of the gamekeeper turned poacher occurs. I found the film compelling and perfectly exposing the moral maze and ethical dilemma that people find themselves in. Here is the trailer…. seriously a good watch.
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