Barclays CEO gets pay docked in whistleblower case

British regulators are investigating Barclays Chief Executive Jes Staley and the bank itself over the handling of a whistleblowing incident.
Staley, who has apologized to the board, made an error in not applying appropriate governance and in taking action to attempt to identify the person, the bank said.
Staley, who has apologized to the board, made an error in not applying appropriate governance and in taking action to attempt to identify the person, the bank said.PHOTO: EPA

LONDON (BLOOMBERG) - Barclays said its board will issue a formal written reprimand and will make a "very significant" adjustment to the variable compensation of chief executive officer Jes Staley after he tried to identify a whistleblower in 2016.

An investigation by law firm Simmons & Simmons concluded Staley "honestly, but mistakenly" believed that it was permissible to identify the author of a letter, Barclays said in a statement on Monday (April 10). Staley, who has apologized to the board, made an error in not applying appropriate governance and in taking action to attempt to identify the person, the bank said.

The UK Financial Conduct Authority and Prudential Regulation Authority have commenced investigations into Staley's conduct and Barclays's systems and controls and culture relating to whistleblowing, the company said. The author of the letter was not identified and no further action was taken, according to the London-based bank.

Staley is alleged to have tried to unmask a tipster who alerted the bank to a personal matter involving a senior executive, said a person with knowledge of the matter, who declined to be named because the probe isn't yet public. Trying to identify the complainant could violate US and UK laws protecting whistle-blowers and the Department of Financial Services in New York is also scrutinizing the case, the person said.