What is business ethics?
• The study of business situations, activities, and decisions where issues of right and wrong are addressed.
• Morality is concerned with the norms, values and beliefs embedded in social processes which define right and wrong for an individual or a community.
• Ethics is concerned with the study of morality and the application of reason to elucidate specific rules and principles that determine right and wrong for any given situation.
• Rules and principles ...view middle of the document...
These concerns have pre-occupied employees, shareholders, mortgage-holders, taxpayers and policymakers. Viewpoints over responsibility, retrospectively and prospectively, appear confused and often contradictory. For example, banks are held responsible both for contributing to the financial crisis by extending credit irresponsibly in the lead up to the recession and for impeding the recovery by failing to extend credit in the period of recession. The financial sector has been broadly held at least partly responsible for the financial crisis, albeit in the context of regulatory failure and over-optimistic / exploited / feckless mortgage holders. Moreover, the criticism of self-rewarding of finance sector executives has acquired an additional sting in the wake of financial crisis and in the midst of the downturn. The recession has brought costs not only for shareholders and a small number of financial institutions but also for taxpayers, those losing jobs, welfare recipients and other beneficiaries of public expenditure. The question of sources of responsibility in and for future financial markets has invited debate about the proper balance of regulation and self-regulation, and even of public and private sources of finance and financial services.