The Big question – FDs say Hampel offers little protection

Only 1% of finance directors believe the recommendations of the Hampel Report offer good protection to shareholders, according to a poll of 200 FDs for The Big Question.

The survey, commissioned by Accountancy Age and Reed Accountancy Personnel, found that 38% of FDs thought Sir Ronald Hampel’s recommendations for corporate governance, released last Wed-nesday, did not offer very much protection. And 10% said it offered no protection at all.

Clive Scott, of Cranstown Drug Services, said: ‘I cannot see how the “wishy-washy” proposals of this report will help protect investors. A far more radical approach is required to change the current situation.’

Brendan Kelly, of Augusta Extrusions, added: ‘It seems to be more of a public rela-tions exercise.’

Richard Windsor, of Nuance Global Traders, who claimed the report offers no protection, added: ‘There remain few instances of corporate governance identifying and eliminating management weaknesses before they occur … Hampel has not addressed the fundamental issue of investors’ advance protection.’

Some FDs attacked the notion of appointing a non-executive director to liaise between the board of directors and shareholders. Jim Beard, of Molecular Products, said: ‘A senior non-executive director could stifle enterprise in many circumstances.’

Hampel criticised, page 4.

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