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Morning Coffee: Barclays finds failing to pay promised bonuses is expensive. The real reason Julian Salisbury left Goldman Sachs?

When we wrote about the exodus of senior Barclays bankers to UBS in May, we didn't mention unsubstantiated gripes that Barclays people had allegedly been promised bonuses that didn't arrive. Now the Wall Street Journal has written about the same thing, and it suggests those gripes were real. 

When it cut pay by 40% for many managing directors between 2021 and 2022, the WSJ claims Barclays also alighted upon the possibility of reneging upon bonuses that it had guaranteed verbally to its recent high-profile hires. 

The WSJ doesn't elaborate, but Barclays insiders said that the absent bonuses - together with the promotion of Cathal Deasy over Marco Valla - was a major reason for all the exits. It's not clear whether Barclays did more than attempt to avoid paying the bonuses, but the intention was enough; the bank was seen to have gone back on its word. 

If this was indeed the case, it seems that Barclays may have made an expensive mistake. Not only has it since lost around 30 of its 200 managing directors (including Valla), but the Wall Street Journal says it's been compelled to make counteroffers worth 'several times' more than last year's bonuses to persuade other people to stay.  Presumably they are now in writing. 

Barclays has also hired-in 20 new managing directors from elsewhere. The grumbling at the bank may not be over, though. Valla is reportedly unpopular because he's been making bankers pitch Barclays 'entire suite of services' while closely monitoring their interaction with clients. 

Separately, Julian Salisbury, the man who gave up a kayaking career and sleeping in a van to become the highest earner at Goldman Sachs, has left Goldman Sachs. 

There's a lot of lamenting Salisbury's departure, but it's also worth wondering whether - in a way - Goldman might welcome it. As Semafor pointed out in an article a few weeks ago, Salisbury had effectively been demoted at Goldman after his role as co-head of the asset management division was downgraded to chief investment officer. The Financial Times reports that there are no plans to fill Salisbury's CIO role with someone else. That role was created especially for him, suggesting it was a confection to keep him happy (or not).


Julian Salisbury is joining Sixth Street as a partner and co-chief investment officer. (WSJ) 

Takashi Murata, co-head of Asia Pacific private investing, is also leaving Goldman. (FT)

Marshall Wace made money betting against NatWest. (Telegraph) 

"The transformation is beginning: in the coming days several hundred Credit Suisse bankers will receive termination notices." (Barrons) 

Andrew Sibbald, the chair of Evercore's London-based business has been poached by private equity house Warburg Pincus. (Financial News) 

Why there's a rush of hiring at boutiques: “When the world is melting up and all of your clients are active, that typically is not the right time to leave your prior firm and go on the beach for six months.” (Financial News) 

Jacky Ang, a senior wealth manager at Credit Suisse in Singapore, is leaving. (Straits Times) 

Citadel Securities hired Tony Tang from BlackRock to help drive expansion in China. It's more than doubled APAC headcount to 250 in recent years and opened new offices in Singapore, Tokyo and Gurugram, India during Covid. (Bloomberg) 

Insurance firm Allstate has 57,000 employees and allows 82% of them in the US to work remotely. (FT) 

“My principle is there are two times you can put your out-of-office on: the first is if you are on a long-haul flight without WiFi and the second is if you are in the ICU [Intensive Care Unit].” (Financial News) 

Have a confidential story, tip, or comment you’d like to share? Contact: +44 7537 182250 (SMS, Whatsapp or voicemail). Telegram: @SarahButcher. Click here to fill in our anonymous form, or email Signal also available.

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AUTHORSarah Butcher Global Editor

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