Business and tech

A leap in annual profits for Barclays

todayMarch 3, 2022

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Barclays is a universal bank with headquarters in London and traces its origins back to the goldsmith business in London in 1690. The company did come under fire when former Chief Executive Jes Staley had allegedly kept contact with infamous sex-trafficker Jeffrey Epstein. Epstein committed suicide while in prison awaiting charges regarding prostitution of underage girls, an abhorrent crime. They exchanged over 1200 emails, which had started during Staley’s time at JP Morgan and while some of the emails were about plans to meet up, some contained unknown terms such as ‘snow white’. These emails came to light 2 weeks after Staley resigned from Barclays. Mr. Staley’s lawyer, Kathleen Harris, denies any involvement of Jes Staley with Epstein stating that he “ had no involvement in any of the alleged crimes committed by Mr. Epstein, and code words were never used by Mr. Staley in any communications with Mr. Epstein, ever”. Barclays announced, however, that they are freezing its long-term bonus and share payments for Mr. Staley, which is nearly £22m in value. This move was done due to the legal proceedings conducted by the FCA and PRA, regarding Mr. Staley’s relationship with Epstein.

After Staley, CS Venkatakrishnan took over as the new chief executive. He did receive a good inheritance, since pre-tax profits had reached £8.4bn in 2021, with tangible equity of 13.4%, which was really good, to say the least. The profits nearly trebled from the £3.1bn achieved in 2020, which goes to show that banks are recovering from the pandemic. These results, according to the bank, could be accredited to Mr. Staley, as it happened during his tenure. Stock markets are a bit troubling for Barclays, but they revealed that there’s a bonus pool of £1.9bn, which allows them to buy back £1bn of its own shares and increase the full-year dividend to 4p-per-share, according to Sky News. It does look like it’s clear sailing for Mr. Venkatakrishnan.

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