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Regulating the consultants

Ed Butler

BBC World Service: Business Daily

19 August 2013 


PA’s Andrew Hooke, Chief Operating Officer, has been interviewed on Business Daily – the BBC World Service’s international business news programme – as part of a feature on regulation in the consulting industry.

The programme starts by discussing the Department of Financial Services’ decision to fine Deloitte $10 million and ban the firm from accepting new consulting engagements at financial institutions in the state of New York.

Asked whether there should be more state-wide regulation for the consulting industry, Andrew – who is the only industry figure to appear on the programme – replies: “Regulation is not the answer; certainly not state or government-type regulation. My view is that a government or state-oriented scheme – providing a rulebook across the entire consulting industry – would be extremely difficult to apply. I think a code of conduct, applied by both us as a consulting industry and by clients, would help ensure that independence exists in the work we do. It’s extremely important that we, as an industry, have a strong independent backbone because that is what we’re about – giving independent advice and solutions to our clients.”

The interviewer asks where regulation should end. Andrew says: “The consulting industry should have a stronger regulatory rulebook that it applies itself. There can be specific government penalties on individual assignments, as has been the case with Deloitte, but blanket regulation would be too difficult and too costly to implement.”

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