Claude Bébéar / Honorary Chairman of AXA, Chairman and Founder, Institut Montaigne

Last updated on profile page : March 15th, 2013

BIO

Claude Bébéar is the honorary chairman and former president of AXA Group, a leading insurer with revenues of 91 billion euros, 80 million clients, and more than 200,000 employees. He is also the founder of the Montaigne Institute, an independent think-tank that has two key goals: to have a constructive influence on public debate by generating original and pragmatic ideas, and to help shape public policy with the objective of improving both the economic and social environment in France.

A graduate from Ecole Polytechnique (one of ParisTech elite graduate schools), Bébéar conceived and wrote the preface for a collection of essays, The Courage to Reform (Odile Jacob Editions, 2002) and is the co-author of They Are Killing Capitalism (Plon Editions, 2003).
(photography : © Patrick Messina)

BOOKS BY CLAUDE BéBéAR

By Claude Bébéar on Paris Innovation Review

Since 2008 and the collapse of Lehman Brothers, global efforts have been undertaken to improve the management of finance, reduce leveraging and increase the equity capital of financial institutions. However, all these measures lack a genuine unity and show considerable differences between nations. The implementation of the new prudential banking regulation of 2012, Basel III, is being postponed indefinitely in the United States. Back to square one for global finance?
Depuis 2008 et la chute de Lehman Brothers, des efforts ont été entrepris dans le monde pour mieux encadrer la finance, pour réduire les effets de levier et augmenter les fonds propres des institutions financières, mais tout cela sans véritable cohésion, avec des différences considérables selon les pays. En particulier, l'application de la nouvelle réglementation prudentielle bancaire de 2012, Bâle III, est reportée sine die par les Etats-Unis. Alors, retour à la case départ pour la finance mondiale ?
Dans un entretien avec ParisTech Review, Claude Bébéar, le Président d'Honneur et ancien Président-directeur général d'Axa, explique pourquoi il croit que les crises financières - comme la crise actuelle du crédit et du marché hypothécaire - sont inévitables à cause de la cupidité des acteurs des marchés. Il défend également une vaste réforme des systèmes de rémunération, en particulier des dirigeants. Et il discute enfin de manière iconoclaste d'une série de sujets parmi lesquels les droits de vote des actionnaires et leurs dividendes, les ventes à court-terme, les LBO, les paradis fiscaux ou encore la nationalisation des banques.
In an interview with ParisTech Review, Claude Bébéar, the honorary chairman and former president of AXA, explains why he believes that financial crises, like the current meltdown triggered by problems in the mortgage and credit markets, are unavoidable because of basic human nature. He also argues for broad reforms in employee-compensations systems, including the remuneration of top executives. And he discusses his provocative views on a range of issues - shareholder voting rights and dividends, the speculative practice of short selling, leveraged buyouts, tax havens, and the nationalization of banks.

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