Er bestaat geen letterlijk verband tussen de ‘waarden’ waaraan banken zeggen te hechten en wat ze daadwerkelijk doen. Maar de manier waarop ze hun waarden formuleren zegt wel degelijk iets over hun gedrag, toont een nauwgezette academische studie aan.
“Integrity” appeared to be the most common value among the 25 banks, followed by “customer focus.” Nonetheless, over the past 6 years, 15 out of the 25 studied banks were involved in one or more scandals. Scandals can be systematic or caused by rogue employees, and benefitting the firm or their customers—in the latter case, providing an interesting interpretation of the customer focus value. Additionally, we found that courage or its synonyms were barely mentioned among banks’ corporate values, potentially providing an additional explanation for the fast size of the financial crisis. Finally, we found that banks that had inclusive social principles such as respect, solidarity, and equality did not face large-scale scandals.