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“The effects of the Jeffrey Epstein scandal stretch far and wide, and now Barclays is at the center of the storm.
With the resignation of CEO Jes Staley after an investigation into his dealings with Epstein by city regulators, it is clear that the conclusions of the investigation will be crucial. While the investigation focused not on Mr Staley’s role at Barclays, but on what he revealed about his previous position at JP Morgan, it questioned how he characterized his previous relationship with the disgraced financier.
Although the details are limited, regulators seem to believe that there has been a definite lack of transparency in this regard. It is understood that Mr. Staley will contest the conclusions and the board clearly wishes to distance Barclays from what may be a lengthy process.
While other organizations are focusing on the environmental aspect of ESG this week in the shadow of COP 26, this development is a reminder that the G, like governance, is becoming increasingly important for companies and investors not to lose sight of them.
A sudden change at the top is always troubling, and the departure of Mr Staley, who drove his successful expansion strategy in investment banking, can be particularly troubling for investors as stocks fall 3% in early trading. However, CS Venkatakrishnan, Head of Global Markets, who takes over the management, ensures continuity to a certain extent. “