The Impact of the Financial Crisis on Business Ethics in the Banking Sector: A Case Study from Slovakia

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The importance of ethical standards for financial markets is based on the purpose of commercial banks and other financial institutions which operate with money of others. Besides significant economic implications, the financial crisis has also revealed considerable lack of moral values in commercial banking, which has been reflected by a very unscrupulous approach of bankers to their clients. The crisis has also caused a fundamental turnaround in public opinions on commercial banking and increased the pressure on application of moral principles in banking, which represents an appropriate complement of banking regulations.

The aim of this article is to determine the basic attributes of business ethics in commercial banking and quantify changes in moral attitudes of bank employees in Slovakia through own research, which occurred during the financial crisis. Moral attitudes of bank employees are analyzed in relation to reaching customer satisfaction.

The research focuses on identificating satisfaction of bank employees and also on how their satisfaction reflects acceptance of customers’ needs. A part of the research also deals with evaluation of customer satisfaction in the same timeframe.

The results of our empirical research show that the low level of satisfaction and loyalty of bank employees is transferred to the low acceptance rate of customer need to sell bank’s products in the banking sector in Slovakia. The low level of satisfaction and loyalty has also caused a decline in the overall customer satisfaction. Index of personal satisfaction of bank’s customers has slightly increased in the examined period, but its current level is still very low.

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