News and current affairs output may at any time deal with any issue, cause, organisation or individual and there must be no doubt over the integrity and objectivity of editorial teams. For this reason, there are specific constraints on those working in BBC News and Current Affairs, Global News and news output in the Nations. Staff, correspondents and freelances primarily known as BBC news presenters or reporters are affected by these constraints.
The main points are summarised below. However, the Guidance on Conflicts of Interest on the Editorial Policy website must be consulted for further information and specific referrals.
Regular BBC news presenters should not undertake promotions, endorsements or advertisements for any company, outside organisation or political party. In exceptional circumstances, with the prior approval of the BBC, they may undertake promotional activities for books which they have written. Any such activity must not jeopardise a presenter's reputation for objectivity and impartiality.
BBC staff, correspondents on non-staff contracts and freelances primarily known as presenters or reporters on BBC News and Current Affairs programmes must not:
state or reveal publicly how they vote or express support for any political party
express a view for or against any policy which is a matter of current party political debate
advocate any particular position on a matter of public policy, political or industrial controversy, or any other 'controversial subject'
There are additional constraints on financial journalists. People working on financial programmes for the BBC should register their shareholdings and other financial interests or dealings. Clear advice is given on this in the Financial Journalism Guidelines.
There are also particular legal constraints which affect financial journalists. It is illegal to use financial information acquired in advance to trade ahead of the markets. It is also illegal to promote financial services without proper authorisation from the relevant regulatory authorities.