Barclays CEO Jes Staley to Step Down Amid Epstein Probe

Barclays Plc Chief Government Officer Jes Staley is stepping down amid a U.Ok. regulatory probe into how he characterised his ties to the financier and intercourse offender Jeffrey Epstein.

Staley, 64, is leaving Monday, based on a press release. C.S. Venkatakrishnan, who was promoted final yr to run the Barclays markets division and was beforehand chief threat officer, will change him as CEO.

The financial institution was made conscious on Friday evening of the preliminary conclusions of regulators “into Mr. Staley’s characterisation to Barclays of his relationship with the late Mr. Jeffrey Epstein and the following description of that relationship in Barclays’ response to the FCA,” Barclays mentioned within the assertion. “In view of these conclusions, and Mr. Staley’s intention to contest them, the board and Mr. Staley have agreed that he’ll step down from his position as group chief govt and as a director of Barclays.”
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Staley’s shock departure caps a tumultuous six years atop the British lender. He fended off a previous regulatory probe and a marketing campaign by an activist shareholder to unseat him over his technique to bolster Barclays’ funding financial institution. The Epstein probe has been working since late 2019, casting a shadow over Staley at the same time as his agency loved file outcomes.

Former cash supervisor Epstein was discovered lifeless in his U.S. jail cell in 2019, after being arrested and charged with intercourse trafficking. Epstein spent many years cultivating ties to U.S. and British elites, from Prince Andrew to Wall Road figures like Staley, Leon Black and Glenn Dubin.

The turmoil at Barclays is the most recent indicator of how the late pedophile has haunted elite monetary and social circles ever since he was accused of abusing and exploiting dozens of ladies. Black has since stepped down as chairman and chief govt officer of Apollo International Administration Inc. and receded from coveted roles together with chairman of New York’s Museum of Trendy Artwork.

Regulatory Probe

U.Ok. regulators have been probing how Staley characterised his relationship with Epstein since late 2019. Epstein usually introduced Staley enterprise when he ran JPMorgan Chase & Co.’s non-public financial institution and the 2 have been shut professionally, an individual acquainted with the matter has beforehand mentioned.

Staley has mentioned his relationship with Epstein “started to taper off as I left JPM and speak to grew to become a lot much less frequent in 2013, 2014,” earlier than ending in 2015, earlier than he took up his position at Barclays.

In the summertime of 2019, Staley volunteered to inform Barclays’s board his model of how his 15-year skilled relationship with Epstein developed. In December of that yr, Britain’s Monetary Conduct Authority opened a proper investigation to scrutinize that account.

“It’s clear in my very own thoughts, going all the way in which again to 2015 after I joined Barclays—I’ve been very clear with the financial institution and have been very keen and open to debate the connection that I had with him,” Staley advised Bloomberg Tv in February 2020.

Regulator Assertion

In a joint assertion, the Prudential Regulation Authority and FCA mentioned they “don’t touch upon ongoing investigations or regulatory proceedings past confirming the regulatory actions as detailed within the agency’s announcement.”

Barclays mentioned in its assertion that “the investigation makes no findings that Mr. Staley noticed, or was conscious of, any of Mr. Epstein’s alleged crimes.” The financial institution will proceed to pay Staley for the subsequent yr and mentioned he’s eligible for repatriation prices to the U.S.

Staley’s exit ends a tumultuous mandate that noticed the American-born, high-profile product of JPMorgan Chase & Co. reboot the funding financial institution constructed by former chief Bob Diamond—the one main securities agency to be headquartered in Britain taking up Wall Road giants in Europe.

He fine-tuned the securities enterprise and employed a swath of lieutenants from his former employer in a bid to compete with Wall Road’s largest companies, and outperformed many European rivals.

Whistleblower Case

Then, there have been the controversies. The Epstein affair wasn’t Staley’s first run-in with British regulators. They concluded in 2018 that he repeatedly and improperly tried to unmask the identification of a whistle-blower who had despatched letters to members of the financial institution’s board. Staley saved his job, although the FCA and Prudential Regulation Authority mentioned he did not behave “with due ability, care and diligence.” Regulators fined him 642,000 kilos ($877,000) and Barclays diminished his 2016 bonus by 500,000 kilos.

Staley spent greater than 30 years at JPMorgan, becoming a member of Barclays after a quick stretch at hedge fund BlueMountain Capital Administration. His concentrate on the funding financial institution was vindicated in current quarters because the pandemic drover capital markets exercise.

Barclays mentioned Venkatakrishnan had been the popular candidate to take over as CEO for greater than a yr, having promoted him from chief threat officer to move of worldwide markets. Venkat was one in all Staley’s first hires from JPMorgan when he took the highest job.

Staley’s “abrupt and unplanned departure is clearly a adverse,” mentioned Edward Firth, an analyst at Keefe, Bruyette & Woods. “That mentioned, it’s spectacular that, for as soon as, a serious U.Ok. financial institution has a transparent succession plan with a person who clearly has the strengths and expertise to handle the enterprise efficiently.” | Barclays CEO Jes Staley to Step Down Amid Epstein Probe


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