Perhaps the most striking thing about the world of finance a decade and a half since the banking crisis is that the industry has not quite managed to regain the allure and self-confidence of earlier times, even though there have been successful years in between.
Indeed, gauging the mood in banking as we near the end of 2023, ‘apprehensive’ seems as good a description as any. Financial institutions have many reasons for feeling uneasy, among them subdued capital markets, a prolonged period of fractious geopolitics, the realities of serving more polarised societies, and the challenge of being in control rather than at the mercy of technology.
Certainly, this is a time in which trust – that most precious commodity in banking – is hard to earn and retain, whether due to conflicting consumer pressures, mounting demands of regulators, or the challenges of managing reputations exposed to the whims and lightning-fast reach of social media.
As we explore in this year’s Global Bank Review: Trust Matters, trust will be stress-tested on many fronts, whether through combatting the escalating threat of online fraud, carving out credible positions on social and climate issues, creating new carbon offset markets which operate with integrity and transparency, or demonstrating resilience in the face of operational or market shocks.
If you were keen to discuss any of the issues raised in the publication in more detail, then please do reach out to your usual HSF contacts.