Journal of Business Ethics

, Volume 147, Issue 4, pp 779–792 | Cite as

When Kamay Met Hill: Organisational Ethics in Practice

  • Jonathan A. Batten
  • Igor Lončarski
  • Peter G. Szilagyi
Original Paper


The Kamay and Hill insider trading conviction in Australia highlights many of the issues and problems involved in the prevention, detection and prosecution of insider trading. The case uniquely highlights how ethical behaviour is instilled at home, in school and in society, and the need for ethical responsibility at the personal and organisational level to complement legal rules and enforcement. We use the Kamay and Hill case to explore the reasons behind the failure of the traditional top-down approach to insider trading prevention, where institutional ethical codes of conduct largely reflect and rely upon national rules, norms, and regulation. We propose a bottom-up approach to ensure that individual and organisational behaviour is ethical, where emphasis is not on compliance but on a set of core ethical values that allow individual and corporate expression. It is our strong belief that compliance cannot replace ethics.


Abuse of public office Australia Ethical norms and values Ethical standards and codes Industry standards Foreign exchange market FX Global Code Insider trading UN Global Compact 



This paper was first discussed at Monash University, Australia, in 2015. The authors wish to thank those who shared their opinions and views on the actions of Christopher Hill and Lukas Kamay, who are both Monash University alumni. We also like to thank Aleksandr Gevorkyan, participants at the 22nd International Vincentian Business Ethics Conference, Patrick Flanagan and three anonymous referees for valuable comments and suggestions.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jonathan A. Batten
    • 1
  • Igor Lončarski
    • 2
  • Peter G. Szilagyi
    • 3
    • 4
  1. 1.Department of Banking and FinanceMonash UniversityCaulfield EastAustralia
  2. 2.Faculty of EconomicsUniversity of LjubljanaLjubljanaSlovenia
  3. 3.CEU Business SchoolCentral European UniversityBudapestHungary
  4. 4.Judge Business SchoolUniversity of CambridgeCambridgeUK

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