The new chief executive of the British bank is aiming to clean up his scam-ridden operation by dropping 3,700 employees from its structured capital markets unit and other offices.
The unit has been described as facilitating “industrial scale tax avoidance” in the Libor scandal, in which banks falsely inflated the interest rate they use to make loans to one another. Approximately $350 trillion in derivatives trading is tied to the Libor.
Barclays is to pay out £1.8bn in bonuses to its 139,200 staff after a year in which profits fell to £246m from £5.9bn a year ago.
Union officials at Unite called for the bank to narrow the gap between its highest and lowest paid employees. “It’s shocking but true that the starting salary at Barclays is just
£13,500 a year, making some workers at the bank eligible to claim tax credits. With pay negotiations due to start soon, Unite will be expecting the bank to reward its staff fairly for their contribution to the success of the bank,” said Dominic Hook, Unite’s national officer.
[CEO Antony] Jenkins signalled the bank would pull back from the international expansion pursued by his predecessors, retreating from continental Europe and focusing on the UK, US and Africa. He made clear that the investment bank would remain a major part of the company’s operations.