Monday, July 2, 2012

Barclays looking for new board chairman with my background

In a Telegraph column, Alistair Osborne looks at what Barclays needs in a new Chairman for its Board of Directors and discovers your humble blogger.
Barclays is seeking Agius’s successor. But for his fee of £751,000 a year, who would want the job?
If the rest of the compensation package including stock options was satisfactory, I would be willing to accept the job for that fee.
Clearing up after the Libor scandal is a near full-time post, not least once the lawsuits fly and regulators tighten the rules on banks.
One of the attractions of the post is the opportunity to clean up Barclays and make it the global standard for a financial institution that market participants trust and want to do business with.  The other is that it is a near full-time post so I could continue blogging!
And that’s before dealing with Mr Diamond.
Based on his speech a year ago about the importance of corporate culture in setting boundaries on behavior when nobody is watching, I am sure the Mr. Diamond will embrace maximizing transparency and minimizing reliance on corporate culture where there is opacity.
“It’s proving more difficult to find appropriate chairmen and chief executives for larger financial companies,” says Cannacord analyst Gareth Hunt. “They’re high profile roles that can be dangerous.”
These roles are only dangerous if the financial institution is opaque.

History has shown that sunlight is the best disinfectant to the types of dangers that arise at these firms.  By making all of Barclays' operation transparent, the risk in this role can be greatly diminished.
Indeed, Barclays is clearly preparing for no external candidates....
Excuse me, but I am an external candidate who fits the bill.  I have experience at a regulator (the Federal Reserve), experience in a bank (including asset/liability and capital management), experience in the capital markets and finally, experience with information technology in financial services.

In addition, I was one of the handful to publicly predict the financial crisis.  Since then, I have shown that I understand what it will take to be successful for a financial institution by making a number of predictions about the lack of success of various policies that have also come true.

In fact, my appointment is likely to result in a significant increase in Barclays stock price as investors associate me with transparency.  Investors know that Barclays' appointing me is a signal that Barclays has nothing to hide.
One complexity for outside candidates is the Financial Services Authority’s new vetting system.... 
The new criteria demand greater “financial services experience” for top banking jobs. But, as Sarah Wilson, managing director of corporate governance agency Manifest, points out, that is part of the problem. “If you only fish from the gene pool the FSA vets, you’ll get the same fish,” she says. “How will you get anyone from outside with a different perspective?” 
Indeed, as the Libor scandal extends to other banks, finding an untarnished experienced banker looks a stretch.
My background looks better all the time!
That’s why some analysts propose Mr Sants himself, though that forgets his regulatory failures during the banking crisis.
I can understand why Barclays would want to reward Mr. Sants for his regulatory failure before another financial institution gets there first.  His regulatory failure has been very profitable for Barclays' bankers.

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