British regulators are investigating Barclays Chief Executive Jes Staley and the bank itself over the handling of a whistleblowing incident. As Lucy Fielder reports, the investigation relates to an attempt by Staley last year to identify the author of a letter that was treated by Barclays Bank as a whistleblowing incident.
Barclays has slapped its chief executive on the wrist and - unusually - cut his bonus, the bank said Monday. Jes Staley - whose bonus was a tidy 1.3 million pounds last year - tried to blow the cover off a whistleblower. Staley has acknowledged mistakes; Barclays accepting that he didn't realise such identification was against the bank's own rules. (SOUNDBITE) (English) REUTERS UK BANKING CORRESPONDENT, LAWRENCE WHITE SAYING: "So Barclay's has responded very promptly, which the authorities will be very happy with, they've launched an investigation by a law firm into exactly what Staley did. They've also cut his pay and formally reprimanded him so quite a strong reaction from the bank about this incident. " It's an embarrassment for Staley, who has been in the job for just 15 months. But also for Barclays, which is grappling with a slew of investigations into employees' manipulation of [Libor benchmark] interest rates. (SOUNDBITE) (English) REUTERS UK BANKING CORRESPONDENT, LAWRENCE WHITE SAYING: "Certainly Staley's job could come under pressure if the FCA's report into this reveals damning conclusions. The bank's annual general meeting on May 10th could now become a flashpoint for Staley because the bank's shareholders will vote on whether to reappoint him or not." Still, unless that report is more damning than expected, Staley looks likely to stay on. After a reign of caution under his predecessor, the former JP Morgan investment banker is popular at Barclays for bringing back a bit of risk-taking swagger.