Barclay's Diamond geezer earns £6.3m

Barclay's CEO Bob Diamond earned £6.3m in pay and bonuses in 2011, but was only the third highest paid exec at the bank...

by Andrew Saunders
Last Updated: 09 Mar 2012
Now £6.3m is a respectable sum in most people’s books, but according to Barclay’s latest annual report two unnamed individuals earned even more than their boss, trousering £6.7m and £6.5m respectively. Nice work if you can get it.  
 
The £6.3m includes £1.35m in salary, £2.7m bonus and a £2.2m LTIP award. All the same it’s a good deal less than the £9m deal he took home last year, reflecting not only what Diamond himself has called ‘unacceptable’ performance but also perhaps a modest attempt to offset any accusations of fat-cattery which might possibly be headed his way.
 
That last point is lent weight by the fact that £6.3m places Diamond conveniently behind (but only just) such rivals as HSBC’s Stuart Gulliver on £7.2m, and Goldman’s Lloyd Blankfein and Morgan Stanley’s James Gorman on £6.64m apiece. Barclay’s performance for its shareholders this year has fallen - its return on average shareholder equity last year was 5.8%, down from 7.2% the year before. HSBC’s by contrast is 10.9%, up from 9.5% in 2010. So Gulliver looks like better value for investors than Diamond by that measure.
 
As the BBC’s Robert Peston points out, there may also be an element of sleight of hand too - that £2.2m LTIP award is only a third of the potential maximum payout of £6.75m. In other words it possibly undervalues what Diamond will actually receive by assuming that his long-term performance will be somewhat mediocre. There’s also the further complication of a one off £5.75m payment awarded to fund tax liabilities related to Diamond’s relocation from the US to London last year.  Oh, and a further £4.8m of shares - awarded in previous years - which vested this month.
 
Altogether that makes a grand total of £15m - crikey, what does he do with it all? Presumably it’s not all stuffed under the bed, otherwise he’d be sleeping with his nose squashed against the ceiling.
 
Both Barclays and Diamond have vociferously defended their right to pay their 238 ‘code staff’ big bucks many times in the past, citing the fair point that the bank has taken not a penny of taxpayer bailout - unlike many others. But all banks, whether directly or not, have benefitted from the implicit state guarantee that has underwritten their activities since 2008, so MT is not entirely convinced that Barclays is going to escape another round of banker bashing that easily...

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