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March 18, 2014

Barclays chief needs to consider radical break-up

“The strategic overhaul being drawn up for Barclays’ investment bank can hardly come soon enough for Antony Jenkins, the British bank’s embattled chief executive.

“Like its main European rival Deutsche Bank, the UK group faces a plethora of challenges, which have weighed on its share price for the past year. New regulation on both sides of the Atlantic, tough market conditions and political pressure over bonuses are all making life increasingly difficult for Europe’s big investment banks.

“Barclays’ new investment banking strategy – expected to include several thousand job cuts and a redeployment of capital to more profitable areas – may not come for months. But in the meantime, investors are losing patience and muttering about the need for a management shake-up.

“It may be worth Mr Jenkins considering a more radical break-up of the bank. But rather than spinning off the investment bank – a frequent subject of speculation – why not float its UK-based retail banking business?”

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Read full Financial Times article here.

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