(Image: Private Media)

Public trust in big business is woeful. And there seems to be no sign of improvement.

The last few weeks has seen a torrent of headlines about corporate misbehaviour which reinforces the view that big business has no interest beside itself -- despite all those warm and fuzzy TV ads and supposed commitment to ESG (Environmental, Social and Governance).

Top of the heap was Ernst & Young, hit with a US$100 million fine after company auditors cheated on an ethics exam. The US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) said it was the largest penalty ever for an accounting firm, and that Ernst & Young deliberately hindered the agency’s investigation of this misconduct by withholding information.