Agius confirms BoE governor’s intervention in Barclays

Chairman of Barclays recounts meeting with Mervyn King during which he was told Bob Diamond had lost the confidence of the regulator; following day the bank’s chief tendered his resignation

Marcus Agius, chairman of Barclays, today confirmed the governor of the Bank of England, Mervyn King, had made it clear Bob Diamond, former chief of Barclays, should leave the bank in the wake of the Libor rate-setting scandal.

Speaking before the UK parliament's Treasury Select Committee, Agius said during a meeting with King on July 2, senior Barclays management had been told in "no uncertain terms" that Diamond "no longer had the support of the regulator".

Asked what had changed over the weekend, given the apparent continued support at the end of the week before, Agius said public outcry had been greater than expected.

Agius said following the meeting, he had conducted a teleconference with the non-executive board members to discuss how they would handle managing the bank if Diamond were to leave. Once the contingency plan was settled on, Agius once again spoke with King, who deemed them "perfectly satisfactory". Agius then ran the plan past Andrew Bailey, head of the Prudential Business Unit, before heading to Diamond's home to discuss the developments with him.

"He [Diamond] was not in a good place," Agius said. "The conversation was not long. He asked for time to talk to his family...I left his house confident that he would resign."

Early the following day, Diamond's resignation was announced. Agius revealed to the Committee that he would be paid close to £2 million ($3.1 million) by way of a severance package.

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