By Simon Miller
Former Barclays chief executive Bob Diamond is to give back half his salary, the bank's chairman said today.
Speaking at the Treasury Select Committee, Barclays chairman Marcus Agius said that Diamond had voluntarily waived all his unvested deferred bonus awards and long term share awards.
Agius told MPs: “Bob Diamond will not be leaving with a package of £20m. He will leave with his salary, that was his decision. We agreed that was the right thing to do.”
In addition, all of Diamond’s outstanding unvested deferred bonus awards and long-term incentives will laps with no compensation in respect of the lapsed awards the bank said in a statement.
The former chief executive will receive his twelve months salary of £1.35m and other benefits which will come to around £2m according to Agius.
The select committee pushed Agius on a letter dated 10 April 2012 from Lord Turner to the Barclays chairman shows the long-running concerns about the bank.
The letter said: "I wishes to bring to your attention our concerns about the cumulative impression created by a pattern of behaviour over the last few years in which Barclays often seems to be seeking to gain advantage through the use of complex structures, or through regulatory approaches which are at the aggressive end of interpretation of the relevant rules and regulations."
Committee member John Mann accused Diamond of misleading the committee when he said he didn’t remember discussions over the behaviour of the bank.
Mann added: “And yet we have this letter, which is the most extraordinary letter, on the most serious of issues to your bank at the time Diamond was in charge. He has calculatedly and deliberately misled this committee. It cannot be true that Mr Diamond forgot this letter.
“The FSA is taking a strip off Barclays and what you are doing.”
However, Agius denied that the letter was “damning”: “I regard it as a firm letter. It's one we took very seriously. I have never had a letter similar to this.”
He added: “I gave Diamond a copy of this letter but can't remember if I talked through letter with him. Regulators are not always right. How we push back is absolutely responsible behaviour by our bank. If they say we are going too far, that is a message we should receive and did receive. I responded to letter in acceptable fashion.”