Brits

  • News

    Deferring ‘Significant’ Amounts Of Compensation, Placing Caps On Bonuses Not Working Out So Well For Barclays

    Only in that senior people the bank worked hard to recruit are quitting en masse. Otherwise, it’s great.

    Barclays spent a decade assembling a team of the most successful gas and power traders in Europe. It took less than 16 months to lose most of them. Mercuria Energy Trading SA, based in Geneva, hired five members from the group of about a dozen from March 2011 to June this year, including Phil Sutterby as head of U.K. and European gas and Roger Jones, the former global chief of commodities, according to people with knowledge of the moves. Another six left for companies including UBS, Noble Group Ltd. and Freepoint Commodities LLC. The departures from the U.K.’s second-biggest bank reflect bonus caps, limits on the amount of money traders can risk and shrinking revenue from the division that includes commodities. While hiring from hedge funds and rival lenders helped Barclays catch up with Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley in commodity derivatives, according to Greenwich Associates, a focus on deferred pay left the bank vulnerable to headhunters.

    “The significant amount of deferred compensation and the aggressive cap on cash payouts at Barclays has unsettled a number of individuals,” said Peter Henry, New York-based head of front-office research at Commodity Search Partners. “Add to that the fact they have been systematically targeted by privately held trading houses, specifically Mercuria, and it’s fairly understandable why senior traders are leaving.”

    Bonus Limits Spark Exodus At Barclays Trading Unit [Bloomberg]

    / Aug 28, 2012 at 11:33 AM
  • News

    Repentant British Banks Forcing Clients To Transport Themselves To Olympics, Stay In What Is Basically The Equivalent Of Motel 6, Drink Olde English

    Time was, working on Wall Street meant going to great lengths to lavishly entertain clients whose business you wanted to win or keep. Client wanted to party on a yacht with forty Brazilian hookers? You made it happen. Client wanted Jay-Z to perform at his son’s Bar Mitzvah? You were on it. Client wanted you to manipulate Libor while simultaneously hand feeding him grapes? All you wanted to know was red or green.

    Whatever they wanted you delivered and then some and the best part was nobody said anything about it. Nobody  judged, nobody protested, nobody wondered if flying to Hyōgo Prefecture to personally slaughter a cow and bring it back with you in business class so the client’s dinner would be fresh was the best use of company money.  Then you nearly take down the global financial system and have to be bailed out by the government and all of a sudden it’s like people think they have the right to count your (or in the case of banks still partially owned by the UK, their) money.

    So you scale back the big outings. You make less of a spectacle. Should be enough to get ‘em off your backs, only it’s never enough for these people. They’re not happy until you’re taking clients to Applebee’s and suggesting getting one appetizer and splitting an entrée, or inviting them to major international sporting events and then denying them black car service, putting them up in relative dumps, and making them drink malt liquor. Which is more or less what one bank is doing.

    The games are typically one of the biggest corporate schmoozefests on the calendar, with official sponsors and interlopers alike flashing the cash for the best tickets, best party venues and best celebrity guests. Many banks and other companies spent mightily four years ago in Beijing to show their clients a good time and increase their profile in China. This time around, banks are under pressure to cut costs and avoid displays of wealth that will further inflame an already angry public. What is more, the U.K.’s influence in the world isn’t what it used to be, and its economy, mired in recession, doesn’t exactly have the growth prospects of China’s. And antibanking sentiment here is still off the charts after several years of global financial turmoil.

    Lloyds is arguably in the trickiest position by virtue of its Olympic sponsorship. The [sponsorship] deal was struck in the heady window between the day London was awarded the games in 2005 and when the global financial crisis kicked into gear—and kicked Lloyds into trouble and, eventually, partial state ownership.

    One of the main points of such deals is the ability to strut with clients around the Olympic Park—something the bank is largely keeping in check. For one thing, Lloyds didn’t buy all of the several thousand tickets allocated to it in the original agreement. And being invited to the games by Lloyds isn’t exactly a luxe affair. The bank said “the majority of our guests will travel to and from Olympic venues on public transport.” Lloyds also says it won’t offer guests transfers to and from airports, and will in some cases put them up at three- or four-star hotels—a contrast to the five-star accommodations frequently used in bank hospitality events. Lloyds has also put the kibosh on Champagne.

    Happy now?

    Hold the Bubbly: London Financiers Keep Low Profile at Olympics [WSJ]

    / Aug 3, 2012 at 1:58 PM
  • News

    Does The British Business Lady Who Just Felt Really Passionately About Her Clients Having Drinks, Cigarettes, And Pet Names Deserve A Second Chance?

    Gang, something’s come up in across the pond that needs our immediate attention. I’ll get right to it: at issue is whether or not “high powered financial adviser” Amanda Daughters should be allowed to have her job back at Aqua Financial Solutions, the firm she founded and was fired from by the chairman a couple years back. She’s currently appealing the decision but ahead of hearing what an employment tribunal has to say, why not give Daughters a trial by jury of her peers? Here’s the rub:

    On January 22, 2010, Daughters left the office to sit down with a couple clients at an off-site meeting place (a bar). Naturally, she got there a few (4) hours early to have a bunch (12*) of drinks. So far, so good. When the clients arrived, one ordered a “spritzer,” which was not to Daughters’ liking, which would explain why she proceeded to “berate” the woman to the point of tears. Then Daughters had a few more drinks. At this point, things apparently got “hazy” for AD who, while she can’t recall much, remembers thinking that making the client cry was “not unduly serious,” as the woman accepted her apology. Then Daughters had a few more drinks. Around this time, she “dragged the other client outside to have a cigarette, even though he was a non-smoker” and called him a cunt (which despite her obviously having meant as a joke was received as “shocking and offensive”). Forty** drinks later, Daughters took herself home and despite being more or less black out drunk, had this weird feeling she’d done something she’d be embarrassed about the next day and called up hr chairwoman to let her know she’d “fucked up again and offended a client.” Having been there before, Daughters also sent an email to the client the following morning to say “I hope you can forgive me.”

    Unfortunately, the client and the chairwoman couldn’t, which resulted in Daughters’s firing for “gross misconduct.” And while Big D realizes maybe she should have done a few things differently, she’s not in agreement a few drinks, a few tears, and a few “you’re a cunt”s are necessarily grounds for dismissal.

    So! Does this lady deserve her job back? On the one hand, perhaps downing 75 drinks prior to and over the course of a client meeting is not the most professional way of conducting business. Okay. That’s fair. On the other, she clearly possesses the type of self-awareness any employer would pay good money to have on staff, as evidenced by the “fucked again” call. Please weigh in now.

    Businesswoman sacked after complaining client drank spritzers [Telegraph]
    *Guessing.
    *Ball park.

    / Mar 22, 2012 at 3:01 PM
  • katrinadarlingbarclays

    News

    And Where Exactly Is The Support For Barclays Employee Nadine Who Moonlights On Weekends As A 4H Judge?

    Katrina Darling…who still holds down a banking job at Barclays in London, will make her first stateside appearance at SoHo nightclub W.I.P. on March 13. She’ll perform her trademark saucy “God Save the Queen” routine during W.I.P.’s Tuesday night Dropout party run by Lyle Derek and Noah Valentyn. Darling said she’s had no backlash from […]

    / Feb 28, 2012 at 5:03 PM
  • News

    “Another Guy In A Chicken Suit Spotted At RBS”

    Why have there been multiple instances of guys dressed up as chickens descending on RBS’s Stamford trading floor, the most recent one being this past Friday?

    / Feb 6, 2012 at 8:32 PM
  • News

    Bonus Watch ’12: RBS Makes Sure Stephen Hester Isn’t Thinking Of Going Anywhere

    The Queen did want to acknowledge all the work he’s done, though, so she threw the government worker a bone he can collect a few years from now.

    / Jan 26, 2012 at 5:34 PM
  • News

    Layoffs Watch ’11: RBS

    Apparently the Queen has had to let some people go.

    / Aug 19, 2011 at 1:17 PM
  • News

    15 Year Old Excel Champ Thinks It’s Cute You Can Data Sort Multiple Columns

    Rebecca Rickwood is a 15 year-old girl living in the UK whose name should make you quake in fear. What about a 15 year-old girl could you possibly have to be afraid of? How about the fact that she could whip up a spreadsheet in the time it takes you to fill out your first […]

    / Aug 4, 2011 at 4:11 PM
  • News

    Layoffs Watch ’11: BarCap (Again)

    Apparently they didn’t quite finish the other day.

    / Jun 9, 2011 at 1:10 PM
  • News

    British Bankers Must Find A New Purveyor Of Sighting-Seeing/Threesome Tours

    Until recently, when a London-based financial services employee got off work and had a special kind of hankering to get off with multiple ladies while taking in some well-known monuments like Big Ben, he need look no further than Whites Gentlemen’s Club. Apparently WGC offered “chauffeured sight-seeing tours around London’s top attractions [and] offered full […]

    / May 26, 2011 at 10:48 AM
  • News

    Barclays Director Messed With The Wrong Dog-Napping Brit

    Once upon a time, there were two Brits named Gabriel Radzikowski and Sara Lilly living in flats in Bath. Lilly was a ‘local director’ at Barclays and Radzikowski…dabbled in various areas. At one point, Radzikowski could no longer afford to pay the rent and knowing his neighbor worked at a bank, figured he’d easily be […]

    / May 23, 2011 at 12:00 PM
  • News

    RBS Is Almost Done Paying For Bank’s Past F*ck-Ups, Says CEO

    A profit is nearly within reach.

    / May 6, 2011 at 12:52 PM
  • News

    HR Assistant Fired For Questioning Fairness Of Her Salary Versus The CEO’s On Facebook

    Until recently, Stephanie Bon, pictured, was working as an HR assistant for Lloyds, making £7/hour. The Chief Executive officer of the bank, António Horta-Osório, makes £4,000/hour (or £13.5million annually). Is this pay disparity fair? Stephanie didn’t think so!

    / Apr 6, 2011 at 10:42 AM
  • News

    Deutsche Bank Employee Suspended For Taunting Protesting Doctors, Nurses

    He yelled at them to “get a job” as a colleague apparently laughed at the not particularly funny joke made slightly more amusing by the fact that Chuckles’ buddy may be out his own.

    / Mar 14, 2011 at 3:00 PM
  • News

    It Is Now Illegal To Refer To Former RBS Banker Fred Goodwin As A Banker

    Remember Fred Goodwin? He was the CEO of RBS for a number of years (about 8) and for many of them, probably right liked being called a ‘banker.’ Like in 2000, when he was name Chief executive and in 2006, when he was voted the most powerful businessman in Scotland. Years from now he’ll look […]

    / Mar 10, 2011 at 6:15 PM
  • News

    PIMCO, Jeff Gundlach Get Run For Their Money From Bond Vigilantes Team At M&G Investments

    You guys want to hang onto your clients? Get video production on the horn and find an empty parking garage ASAP (turn your volume down, this one’s on auto-play).

    / Mar 9, 2011 at 10:27 AM
  • News

    How Did A Bunch Of Drunk British Traders Locked In An Elevator Deal With Their Liquidity Issues?

    The London Evening Standard reports that 7 British traders (among them, BGC Partners’ head of FX options in London and a Citibank EM options guy) found themselves locked in a lift this week, following an evening of “eating sushi and drinking” with clients. Despite “shouting for help” and “pressing the emergency button,” the group was […]

    / Mar 2, 2011 at 11:03 AM
  • News

    Bonus Watch ’11: Drunk BarCap Trader Has Great News For Anyone Who Didn’t Exactly Push Him Or Herself This Year

    “Even if a guy is really lazy and has done s*** all year, he’ll still get a £600,000 bonus.”

    / Feb 16, 2011 at 9:55 AM

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