New storm over £8.75m payout for Barclays’ Jerry del Missier

Jul 26, 2012

Payout emerges as Barclays vice-chairman has to defend executives’ donations to Mitt Romney

BARCLAYS continues to dominate the headlines. It turns out the top man responsible for ordering the submission of false information to Libor, Jerry del Missier, left with £8.75m when he quit the bank earlier this month.

At the same time, Barclays is having to deal with the revelation that some of its senior American executives have been fundraising for Republican candidate Mitt Romney when, as MPs put it, they should have been working to rebuild public trust in the bank.

The £8.75m payoff:
It appears Del Missier negotiated the severance package with chairman Marcus Agius soon after the Libor scandal broke. It meant that he left with four times as much as his boss Bob Diamond, who left the bank the same day.

The £8.75m represented half of a £17m long-term bonus which had matured in March. At that time, Del Missier "was asked to defer receipt of the award because it was seen as an inappropriate time for such a lavish payout", The Times reports. According to City sources, Barclays felt it had no legal argument to deny Del Missier the money on the day he left.

The pay-out "looks certain to trigger another political storm over bankers' pay", says The Daily Telegraph. George Mudie, a Labour member of the Treasury select committee, says the revelation makes any claims that Barclays is determined to change its culture and behave more acceptably look "shallow".

The fundraising:
A vice-chairman at Barclays has written to MPs saying the bank is non-partisan and any political donations are made by employees in a personal capacity.

It follows last week's Early Day Motion, signed by 11 MPs, demanding the bank and its directors "stop working to bolster Romney's election campaign war chest and concentrate on repairing confidence and trust in the banking system instead," as The Guardian puts it.

Barclays US executives have already raised $1m for Romney and are expected to be among the many international bankers at a fundraising dinner in Mayfair tonight, to be attended by the candidate. Tickets cost between $50,000 and $75,000.

Vice-chairman Cyrus Ardalan has written to the MPs saying: "All political activity undertaken by Barclays' US employees, including personal fundraising for specific candidates, is done so in a personal capacity, and not on behalf of Barclays."

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