United States | FDIC boss resigns after report of ‘toxic culture’

(Washington) The head of the FDIC, a US banking regulator, announced Monday that he will leave his post soon, after a report of a long-standing “toxic culture” within the agency, and calls to resign from Republican and Democratic parliamentarians.

“In light of recent events, I am prepared to step down from my responsibilities once a successor is confirmed,” Martin Gruenberg, chairman of the FDIC, the agency responsible for insuring bank deposits in the States, announced in a statement. -United.

“Until then, I will continue to fulfill my responsibilities as Chairman of the FDIC, including transforming the workplace culture at the FDIC,” he added.

The White House indicated Monday evening that Joe Biden would “soon” propose a new candidate for president of the FDIC.

“And we expect the Senate to quickly confirm the nominee,” Sam Michel, a White House spokesman, said in an email.

Martin Gruenberg, at the head of the FDIC since January 2023, after a first term as president and functions of director and vice-president since 2005, was heard Wednesday and Thursday in Congress.

He had been questioned at length by elected officials in the House of Representatives and senators on the conclusions of an independent investigation, published on May 7, which described the FDIC as “a workplace where the culture is “misogynistic”, “patriarchal ”, “insular” and “obsolete””.

Several elected Republican officials then called for his resignation, with Democrats keeping their distance to prevent a Republican from taking the helm of the agency.

But on Monday, Democrat Sherrod Brown, chairman of the Senate Banking Committee, in turn called for his departure: “there must be fundamental changes at the FDIC,” he said in a press release.

“These changes start with new leadership,” he continued.

Multiple supporting testimonies, the conclusions of the report, carried out by the firm Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton at the request of the FDIC, mention sexist, racist and homophobic remarks, harassment, mockery towards employees with disabilities, among others. self of white men…

The survey also shows “a widespread fear of reprisals […] which has led to underreporting of malpractice over the years.”

And reports of inappropriate behavior led to few or no sanctions: “according to the FDIC’s public reports, of the 92 harassment complaints filed under its anti-harassment program […] from 2015 to 2023, none resulted in […] any disciplinary action more serious than suspension.”

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