WASHINGTON Financial regulators are seeking to establish new standards to gauge the racial and gender diversity policies at companies including everything from employees, customers and suppliers.
Six federal regulators jointly proposed diversity standards Wednesday that will be monitored by a division at each agency called the Office of Minority and Women Inclusion. Regulators will look at the policies and practices of financial companies based on four main areas: their commitment to diversity and inclusion; the employment profile and practices; procurement and business practices and supplier diversity; and transparency of organizational diversity and inclusion.
The regulators said the directors of their diversity division at each agency has been meeting with industry representatives, trade groups and consumer advocates to help form new diversity standards that were required under the Dodd-Frank Act.
"Information obtained from those discussions helped shape the proposed standards," the regulators said.
They also stipulated that companies should account for other variables during diversity self-assessments such as the asset size, employee count, location, contract volume and amount of customers at each company.
The proposal comes a day after five of those same regulators issued a joint statement attempting to ease lenders' fears of violating fair lending laws if they only wrote the safest loans under the new qualified mortgage rule starting in January.
The agencies that issued the diversity standards were the Federal Reserve Board, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, the National Credit Union Administration, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency and the Securities and Exchange Commission.
The proposal will be open for comment for 60 days once it's published in the Federal Register.