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Barclays Wealth: Little More Than a Boiler Room?

Posted by Larry Doyle on January 23, 2013 9:11 AM |

The cover up is often worse than the crime.

How often have we seen that reality play out? All too often. Might we see it play out once again at Barclays Wealth Management, a division of Barclays Global?

Well, depending on how aggressive financial regulators  — I know, that is an oxymoron — might be, the operation at Barclays Wealth may prove to be particularly volatile and potentially explosive. How so? If there is a shred of truth in a story emanating in the UK, then Barclays Wealth might only be compared to some of the best boiler room operations on Wall Street. 

Let’s navigate as the The Mail Online recently highlighted, Exposed: The Regime of Fear Inside Barclays — and How The Boss Lied and Shredded The Evidence,

A senior Barclays executive has quit after it was revealed that he secretly shredded a bombshell report that described a key part of the bank as ‘out of control’.

Andrew Tinney, who was chief operating officer of the bank’s high-end private investment division, Barclays Wealth, destroyed the explosive dossier at his £5 million Surrey mansion after reading its shocking contents.

He then misled banking regulators and Barclays chief executive Antony Jenkins – the man brought in to clean up the bank after the Libor rate-fixing scandal and the resignation of Bob Diamond – by pretending that the report had never existed.

Shredding documents? Now why would somebody want to do that? Something to hide, perhaps? Might there be information shredded that would have detailed how Barclay Wealth clients were abused in the Libor manipulation scandalous racket? Just asking.

The dossier, seen by The Mail on Sunday, exposes a culture of fear, intimidation, bullying and mismanagement at the bank’s stockbroking and investment arm,  which handles client assets worth £184 billion.

Fear, intimidation, bullying and mismanagement? Is that right?

Sounds like they were ‘educated’ and ‘trained’ at the Gambino and Genovese School of Professional Management.  What else do we learn?

The report which Mr Tinney suppressed paints a devastating picture of incompetence and arrogance at the bank, showing that executives:

–Pursued a ‘revenue at all costs’ strategy.
–Fostered a culture of fear and intimidation.
–Were ‘actively hostile’ to the idea of compliance with banking rules.
–Presided over a ‘broken culture’ where problems were ignored or buried.
–Allowed the business to spin ‘out of control’.

But Mr Tinney, 46, shredded the only hard copy and ensured that its contents were not entered into the Barclays computer system.

Compare that information with this 2 minute trailer and see if you might detect any similarities.

Where there is smoke there is typically fire. Why would anybody want to do business with this firm?

Not for nothing, but why hasn’t this story received any meaningful coverage on this side of the pond? Compliant media, perhaps?

Time to issue some subpoenas and bring in some independent investigators and prosecutors. Does anybody still care about justice?

I thank the regular reader who brought this story to my attention.

Larry Doyle

Isn’t it time or overtime to subscribe to all my work via e-mail, an RSS feed, on Twitter or Facebook.

I have no business interest with any entity referenced in this commentary. The opinions expressed are my own. I am a proponent of real transparency within our markets so that investor confidence and investor protection can be achieved.

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