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Barclays to cut investment banker bonuses amid activist investor criticism

Lianna Brinded
Head of Yahoo Finance UK
Signage shines through a window reflecting Barclays Plc head offices at the Canary Wharf business, financial and shopping district in London, U.K. Photo: Luke MacGregor/Bloomberg/Getty

Barclays (BARC.L) is planning to cut investment bank bonuses ahead of next week’s crucial annual meeting, according to the Financial Times.

The paper, citing several anonymous sources who were briefed on plans, reported that the cut to bonuses were part of the bank’s defence against activist investor Edward Bramson, who is pushing for the lender to cut back on its investment banking activities in a bid to improve its share price.

Barclays declined to comment on the contents of the report to Yahoo Finance UK.

Bramson from Sherborne Investors has been pushing for a seat on the board of Barclays. Sherborne Investors has built a £1bn ($1.31bn) stake in Barclays, making it the bank’s third largest shareholder. Most of this shares have been paid for using a $1.4bn (£1.07bn) loan from Bank of America.

Bramson said in a letter to Barclays shareholders last week: “An alternative voice on the board would seem to be healthy for the company and its shareholders.”

He believes a seat on the board would help him do this, and has arranged a vote on whether to install him on the board at Barclays’ AGM on 2 May in a bid to push the changes through.

Read the full letter here.