Feb 04 - They've been battered by scandal after scandal so how does a big bank rebuild its reputation? Joanna Partridge looks at the strategy being adopted at Lloyds and others, and asks what it will take for the public to trust big banks again.
Brands which have taken a battering. First banks were rocked by the financial crisis. Then a series of scandals - such as mis-selling insurance and rate rigging. Lenders have their work cut out trying to restore customers' trust. Financial sector turmoil is subsiding - and some bank brands have survived better than others. Brand Finance along with The Banker magazine have rated the top 500 banking brands. U.S lenders dominate - with Wells Fargo in the top spot, followed by the UK's HSBC, Bank of America, Citi and Chase. David Haigh is CEO of Brand Finance. SOUNDBITE: David Haigh, CEO of Brand Finance, saying (English): "Over the past five years the banking industry has learned a lot of lessons and we are now seeing the last of the fines, the last of the problems and a whole new generation of leaders bringing their brands up to scratch and restoring their reputations." Britain's Lloyds banking group is one of those trying to change consumers' views. It's just had to allocate a further £1.8 billion for the mis-selling of payment protection insurance - taking the total provision to nearly £10 billion. CEO Antonio Horta-Osorio spoke at a London conference on the future of banking. He says the key to rebuilding Lloyds' reputation is to focus on customers. SOUNDBITE: Antonio Horta-Osorio, CEO of Lloyds, saying (English): "I believe the industry should never again launch a product without tangible customer benefit. And in Lloyds Banking Group I will make that belief a reality. We are not perfect, but when we make a mistake today, or uncover any mistake from the past, we will fix it in the customer's interest and fix it quickly." Bankers' bonuses also remain a contentious subject. Barclays CEO Antony Jenkins has just turned down his 2013 bonus. It's the second year he's done so, saying it would be inappropriate when the bank's still paying for past mistakes. SOUNDBITE: David Haigh, CEO of Brand Finance, saying (English): "They are meant to be there for exceptional performance and if there is exceptional performance, then I see not reason why bankers or anybody else should not get a bonus. Clearly remuneration committees need to decide what is exceptional performance and what is merited. And I think over the last five to ten years there have been some fairly obsene amounts paid which people are very upset about." The euro zone is also trying to restore trust in its banks. The European Central Bank is currently stress testing its lenders before it becomes bank supervisor in November. But previous ones have only gone some way to rebuilding reputations - banks may also need time, and a strategy, to convince a very sceptical public ///// The European Central Bank's latest - and unprecedented - round of health checks will be carried out before the ECB becomes bank supervisor in November. But previous stress tests have only gone some way to rebuilding reputations - banks also need time, and a strategy, to win over customers again.