Lord Oakeshott attacks Barclays over bonsues

The Guardian reports:

Barclays was tonight accused of making a mockery of attempts to call a truce with the government over “banker bashing” amid fresh expectations that its chief executive Bob Diamond would be awarded a bonus of at least £8m.

After months of talking with the banks, the coalition is yet to announce a deal, codenamed Merlin, under which the industry would to agree lending targets of up to £190bn and show restraint on bonuses in return for less criticism from the government.

The talks with the banks have been led by Diamond’s predecessor John Varley and tonight Lord Oakeshott, a Liberal Democrat treasury spokesman, appeared to suggest the bank was making a mockery of those discussions.

“Barclays are shaking hands with government over project Merlin while holding up two fingers to the country with the other,” Oakeshott said.

You can read the full story here.

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16 Comments

  • Excuse any impertinence, but when is there going to be summat on Lord Carlile?

    ~alec
    http://efrafandays.wordpress.com

  • Tony Greaves 5th Feb '11 - 9:41pm

    Oh quite a lot, believe me!

    Tony Greaves

  • @Red Rag – obviously they do, it is a coalition and there are clearly identifiable gains.

  • Simon McGrath 6th Feb '11 - 9:31am

    So what is the problem here? An extremely capable and successful man who runs a company which has managed itself well and not required to be bailed out has been paid a lot of money. Due to the new FSA rules he will actually get virtually no cash but will be paid in shares.
    Around 63% of this payment will come to the Government in the form of tax and NI?

    Is £8m a lot of money yes – is it less than he would get elsewhere, defintely.
    No problem I can see

  • David from Ealing 6th Feb '11 - 10:11am

    The problem is that while the rest of the country is suffering, one man is getting a bonus which is equivalent to what the average person earns in 308 years. Since Barclays profits are likely to be halved, there is no reason for a bonus here. The fact that the bulk of it will be paid in shares is irrelevant. The man’s salary allows him to live very well. The shares are simply his pension – and this comes at a time when the pensions of the rest of us are being hit.

  • I’m getting rather bored with Barclay’s going on about how they didn’t need taxpayers’ money to bail them out. One of the main reasons behind the collapse of RBS was the fact that they paid far too much for ABN Amro. Why did they pay so much? Because there was a rival bidder. Who was that rival? Barclay’s. If Barclay’s had won that battle, they would be in a far worse position than they are now.

  • toryboysnevergrowup 6th Feb '11 - 2:13pm

    I’m sorry Mr Oakeshott you are so far behind the game on this you really need to think seriously about how well you are doing your job. The battle on this was lost a while ago when Vince and others caved. The FSA’s remuneration code was issued before Xmas and there was nothing in it to stop bonuses like this. Osborne and Cable even pulled out of threatned meetings with the major banks and so missed their chance to get over how their message, whatever that my be. Game set and maych to the bankers – and Diamond is really just taking the mickey now.

  • toryboysnevergrowup 6th Feb '11 - 2:14pm

    I’m sorry Mr Oakeshott you are so far behind the game on this you really need to think seriously about how well you are doing your job. The battle on this was lost a while ago when Vince and others caved in. The FSA’s remuneration code was issued before Xmas and there was nothing in it to stop bonuses like this. Osborne and Cable even pulled out of threatned meetings with the major banks and so missed their chance to get over how their message, whatever that my be. Game set and maych to the bankers – and Diamond is really just taking the mickey now.

  • toryboysnevergrowup 6th Feb '11 - 2:20pm

    If Mr Oakeshott really wants to try and have an impact could I suggest he starts making a noise now about measures to address tax advoidance (e.g where exactly is Mr Diamond taxed on his gains) so he might conceivably have some effect in getting a smidgeon of LibDem policy into the Budget.

  • greg Tattersall 6th Feb '11 - 3:01pm

    Well done to oakeshott for standing up to the banks.The lib dem part of the coalition must stand up and defend ordinary and decent taxpayers who have bailed out the banks.These same banks think their industry deserves taxpayer money when things go wrong but can eat all the profits whe things go right.What utter contempt these bankers have towards the decent taxpaying public.

  • Simon McGrath 6th Feb '11 - 10:09pm

    @Greg ‘The lib dem part of the coalition must stand up and defend ordinary and decent taxpayers who have bailed out the banks’ er, which bit of barclays not being baled out don’t you get?
    @toryboys – Diamond is paid here by barclays which means his tax would be deducted at source.
    @Simon G – you mean it is barclays fault that they decided ABN Amro was too expensive so RBS paid too much? Surely barclays were just being prudent – there was presumably a price the deal was sensible at and they decided it had gone above that level. Sounds as though they know what they were doing.

  • toryboysnevergrowup 7th Feb '11 - 10:24am

    Simon McGrath

    I don’t think so http://www.guardian.co.uk/business/2011/jan/13/bob-diamond-employed-barclays-subsidiary

    The whole banking system including Barclays was bailed out by the tax payer – you don’t seriously want to argue that if RBS and HBOS hadn’t been supported that this wouldn’t have left a very big whole in Barclays balance sheet.

  • Simon McGrath

    I think you may have misunderstood my point. If RBS had not put in their final bid for ABN Amro then Barclay’s would have overpaid for it. Just not by as much as RBS did.

  • toryboysnevergrowup 9th Feb '11 - 9:39pm

    What an interesting thread given subsequent events – Lord Oakeshott is to be commended for doing the honourable thing and he clearly has decent intentions.

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