A senior executive at Swiss investment bank Credit Suisse who claims to be “nonbinary” and “gender fluid” spent much of the past several years campaigning for LGBTQ inclusion in the global financial system as performance at the company declined.
The financial institution named several “material weaknesses” with respect to risk assessment strategy in a recently published annual report. The Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority and the Swiss National Bank provided the company with $54 billion in liquidity on Thursday in order to prevent the collapse of the “systemically important” institution.
Jordan Schachtel, an independent journalist at The Dossier, noted on social media that Bunce has accumulated many honors from LGBTQ activist entities and prominent organizations in the financial sector. The executive’s LinkedIn account lists “She/Her/They” pronouns; half of the profile picture featured on the account shows Bunce in a suit and tie, while the other half shows Bunce wearing makeup, a blonde wig, a red dress, and what appear to be fake breasts.
Bunce has worked at Credit Suisse for nearly two decades, including more than eight years as the firm’s head of global markets core engineering integration components.
The Bank of London featured Bunce as recently as this week in its Rainbow Honours initiative. “It warms my heart to see so much work done to progress our world to being a more open and inclusive space for all and where everyone can live free from the fear of prejudice, discrimination and hatred,” Bunce wrote on LinkedIn. “I am also so very proud of all my colleagues here at Credit Suisse and the many other firms and organisations I work with as each and every LGBTQI+ Ally really is a super hero.”
Bunce has also been listed as one of the “champions of women in business” by Financial Times. The executive defined intersectionality as not conforming to “a nice, single one box” last year at an LGBTQ conference hosted by consulting firm McKinsey & Company. “I’m nonbinary, I’m genderfluid, I’m trans, I’m many different things,” Bunce remarked. “We all have so many different amazing attributes. To me, we’re all the same, but uniquely different.”
McKinsey interviewed Bunce in 2021 and called the executive “Mx. Pips Bunce” in a social media video.
Credit Suisse boasts on its website that more than 6,000 employees were “active LGBTQ+ allies” as of two years ago and offers “ally networks” for members of senior management.
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The recent financial instability at Credit Suisse has been developing for years, but intensified days after Silicon Valley Bank, one of the largest financial institutions in the United States, collapsed after depositors rushed to withdraw their funds. Silicon Valley Bank announced a share sale after the company suffered heavy losses from the liquidation of a $21 billion bond portfolio, raising concerns among clients about the safety of their assets. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation now directs holdings maintained by Silicon Valley Bank.
The company faced backlash in the wake of its collapse for an intense emphasis on diversity, equity, and inclusion. Silicon Valley Bank neglected to fill its senior risk management role for most of last year while Jay Ersapah, the executive in charge of risk management in Europe, Africa, and the Middle East, described herself as a “queer person of color from a working-class background” and organized LGBTQ initiatives such as a month-long pride campaign.
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