Barclays CEO under investigation over links to Jeffrey Epstein

Barclays chief executive Jes Staley said he regretted his relationship with Jeffrey Epstein which began in 2000 while he was employed by JPMorgan

Barclays chief executive Jes Staley said he regretted his relationship with Jeffrey Epstein which began in 2000 while he was employed by JPMorgan

The FCA and the Prudential Regulation Authority have launched an investigation into Barclays CEO Jes Staley's former links to Jeffrey Epstein. An article stated Staley visited Epstein while he was serving time for soliciting prostitution from a minor and suggested the pair had a close business relationship over many years. "For sure, with hindsight with what we know now, I deeply regret having any relationship with Jeffrey".

The relationship ended in late 2015, Staley said.

But several questions remain unanswered, including why the Barclays boss continued the relationship despite Epstein's conviction.

"It began to taper off as I left JP Morgan and contact became much less frequent".

"Obviously I thought I knew him well and I didn't", Staley told reporters of Epstein. He said Epstein was an existing client of the bank.

The FCA and another United Kingdom regulator, the Bank of England's Prudential Regulation Authority, confirmed in a statement that they are investigating the Barclays CEO.

Staley and the disgraced American financier developed a professional relationship when Staley held a senior position at JPMorgan.

"In the summer of 2019, in light of the renewed media interest in the relationship, Mr Staley volunteered and gave to certain executives, and the chairman, an explanation of his relationship with Mr Epstein".

Staley assured Barclays that he had no contact with Epstein at any time since taking up his role as Barclays Group CEO in December 2015.

But it said the FCA and United Kingdom banking regulator the Prudential Regulation Authority were now investigating "Mr. Staley's characterization to the company of his relationship with Mr. Epstein and the subsequent description of that relationship in the company's response to the FCA".

The investigation centres around "Mr. Staley's characterisation to the Company of his relationship with Mr. Epstein and the subsequent description of that relationship in the Company's response to the FCA", Barclays said.

Analysts had expected Barclays to report a pretax profit of GBP4.44 billion, taken from FactSet and based on 14 analysts' estimates.

Staley received a bumper pay package of 5.9 million pounds ($7.65m) in 2019, up from 3.36 million pounds ($4.36m) a year earlier.

In its statement, Barclays said it believes Staley has been "sufficiently transparent" and as a result, "retains the full confidence of the Board, and is being unanimously recommended for re-election at the Annual General Meeting".

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