Overseeing emerging risks and adapting operations through the COVID-19 crisis

May 2020

On April 29 and May 1, Bank Governance Leadership Network (BGLN) participants joined two virtual meetings to discuss the global response to the COVID-19 pandemic and implications for large banks. The key themes that emerged are:

  • Credit issues and the implementation of government-backed loan programs

    Bank boards and management teams are managing a tension between the need to move quickly to extend financial support—including via government mandated loan programs—to customers impacted by the crisis and the need to ensure that the proper controls, risk management, and ethical lending practices are in place.

  • Monitoring and measuring risk through unprecedented uncertainty

    Board oversight of risks in the current environment is being challenged by a range of unknowns outside the control of banks.

  • Heightened concerns around technical and operations resilience

    Around the globe, bank leaders have observed—with some surprise—strong business continuity thus far, despite the disruptions caused by the pandemic and massive migration to remote working. However, some highlighted emerging operational risks as the current operating environment persists.

  • Considering changes to management and operations.

    Participants discussed key organizational challenges and concerns that have emerged as the impact of the pandemic continues to unfold.