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Highlights

As the U.S. workforce has become increasingly diverse, many private and public sector organizations have recognized the importance of recruiting and retaining minority and women candidates for key positions. However, previous congressional hearings have raised concerns about a lack of diversity at the management level in the financial services industry, which provides services that are essential to the continued growth and economic recovery of the country. The recent financial crisis has renewed concerns about the financial services industry's commitment to workforce diversity. This testimony discusses findings from a June 2006 GAO report (GAO-06-617), February 2008 testimony (GAO-08-445T), and more recent work on diversity in the financial services industry. Specifically, GAO assesses (1) what the available data show about diversity at the management level from 1993 through 2008 and (2) steps that the industry has taken to promote workforce diversity and the challenges involved. To address the testimony's objectives, GAO analyzed data from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC); reviewed select studies; and interviewed officials from financial services firms, trade organizations, and organizations that represent minority and women professionals. To the extent possible, key statistics have been updated.

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