Barclays CEO resigns over UK regulators Epstein report

UK bank Barclays’ chief executive resigned Monday following a report from UK regulators on his past ties to late financier and sex offender …

UK bank Barclays’ chief executive resigned Monday following a report from UK regulators on his past ties to late financier and sex offender Jeffrey Epstein.

Jes Staley previously said he “deeply regrets” his relationship with Epstein, who committed suicide in August 2019 in a New York federal prison while awaiting trial against sex trafficking. There is no evidence that 64-year-old Staley knew anything about Epstein’s alleged crimes.

Staley said he would challenge the regulatory authorities’ preliminary conclusions that were communicated to him and the bank on Friday. The report from the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority examined how Staley characterized his relationship with Epstein with Barclays when he worked for the U.S. investment bank J.P. Morgan Epstein’s private banker was.

In a statement Monday, Barclays stated that the investigation “did not reveal” that Staley saw or knew of any of Epstein’s alleged crimes.

Staley said his last contact with Epstein was in the fall of 2015 when he and his wife sailed to Epstein’s private island for lunch. This trip took place just before he came to Barclays. He said he had no contact with Epstein when he joined the bank in December 2015.

C.S. Venkatakrishnan, Head of Global Markets at the bank, will take over the management. Barclays said succession planning had been underway for some time and he was identified as the preferred candidate more than a year ago.

Barclays shares fell 2% after the announcement, as Staley was generally credited with doing good work at the bank.

“Barclays is right to pull the plug now,” said Neil Wilson, senior market analyst at Markets.com. “It probably could have done it sooner.”

The bank said Staley will receive a payout of £ 2.5 million and other benefits for a year. He may also be eligible for repatriation costs to the US and could receive more cash.

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