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News digest 30/09/16: Football Agents say deregulation allowed ‘manipulation and abuse’

30 September 2016 by Henry Ker

Football Agents say deregulation allowed ‘manipulation and abuse’ - read more

The latest governance stories in the news

Deregulation allowed ‘manipulation and abuse’, says the Association of Football Agents

Deregulating the licensing system for football agents opened it to ‘manipulation and abuse’, says the Association of football Agents (AFA). It called for tougher new rules and licensing after the recent Daily Telegraph sting and allegations of corruption involving top flight football managers.

Previously, the Football Association directly regulated agents representing players and clubs involved in transfer deals. All agents operating in England had to be licensed, which required sitting an exam. However, Fifa took over responsibility for regulating agents in 2015 and the licensing regime changed.

‘The global move to deregulation has not worked … It has allowed the system to be more open to manipulation and abuse,’ the AFA said.


FTSE 100 put aside £31.3 billion in legal provisions

Last year, FTSE 100 firms set aside £31.3 billion to cover potential legal costs, fines and compensation. It is a 22% rise from 2015 (which was a total of £25.6 billion), according to research by Thomson Reuters.

Over half of this (57%) comes from financial services firms and banks who are still covering costs from PPI mis-selling and scandals such as the Libor rigging.

Raichel Hopkinson, Head of the Practical Law Dispute Resolution Service at Thomson Reuters, commented ‘In the last twelve months regulators have continued to come under pressure from the government to promote and enforce a culture of compliance and accountability … Imposing punitive fines on non-compliant banks is a big part of this.’


Gender gap at blue chip companies is closing

There is increased momentum in closing the gender gap at companies in the S&P Euro 350 Index and S&P 500 Index.

The research from S&P Global Market Intelligence shows that over the last eight years, the companies of the S&P Euro 350 have more than doubled the number of female CEOs; from six in 2009 to 14 in 2016.

Pavle Sabic, Director and Global Head of Market Development at S&P Global Market Intelligence, commented ‘As greater emphasis is being placed on gender diversity at global companies and vigorous petitioning is taking place in the political sphere, it seems only natural that more females should assume the leadership position(s) of CEO.’

However, at a rate of just one additional CEO position being taken by a woman every year, progress is still slow and should not be seen as an unmitigated success.

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