Bob Diamond: Money isn't my goal, I don't even own a boat
Shamed former Barclays boss admits 'I didn't understand Libor' in first interview since he quit
BOB DIAMOND, the former Barclays boss once described as the "unacceptable face of banking" by Peter Mandelson, has claimed he is not motivated by money and doesn't even own a boat.
In a lengthy interview with The New York Times, his first since being ousted from Barclays in the wake of the Libor rate-rigging scandal ten months ago, the American-born banker explains that while it might sound as "arrogant as hell", he "never set money as a goal. It was a result."
He went on: "The only car I own, honestly, is an 11-year-old Jeep on Nantucket. We don't have a boat, we don't have fancy cars. I think we have lived well, but it hasn't been about accumulation or anything like that."
In the article, which is accompanied by a photograph of him on New York's subway, the 61-year-old attempts to explain his "spectacular" downfall. He claims he was "pushed out" by the UK government in July 2012, stepping down the morning after Bank of England governor Sir Mervyn King made it clear Diamond could no longer enjoy "the support of the regulators". Diamond, who admits he may have been "tone deaf" to British public opinion at times, says he felt his best option was to "step aside and shut up" even though he still believes King did not have the authority to oust him.
Diamond earned £120 million in bonuses during his years at Barclays, but admitted that he did not understand how Libor worked before the interest rate-rigging scandal erupted and cost him his job. "Up until all of this, I didn't even know the mechanics of how Libor was set. I bet you if you asked any chief executive of any bank on the street, they would give you the same answer."
He also touches on a Twitter jibe sent by his daughter, Nell, following his resignation. The student called her father after writing that Ed Miliband and George Osborne could HMD, or "hold my dick", saying: "Dad, I think I did something really bad. I think I'm in trouble." Diamond senior recalls telling his daughter: "Sweetie, I love you. That's so nice. I think we're probably all in trouble."