Barclays bosses' bid for Libor trial anonymity fails

Diamond among staff named after attempt to keep identities secret during damages hearing thwarted by High Court

An attempt by current and former leading Barclays executives to keep their names out of the first British trial related to the alleged fixing of Libor interest rates was thwarted at the High Court.

Former chief executive Bob Diamond is the most high-profile of the 104 employees who could be called as witnesses in the court action and had sought anonymity. They also include Mr Diamond's one-time number two Jerry del Missier, current finance director Chris Lucas, another ex-boss, John Varley, and the man now in charge of Barclays' investment bank, Rich Ricci. None of these are implicated in any wrongdoing.

The group of 104 includes a "shortlist" of 24 current and former Barclays employees who were directly referred to in regulatory settlements following the scandal, which saw the bank paying £290m in fines to regulators on both sides of the Atlantic.

None of these executives are among the 24, and Mr Justice Flaux stressed that not all the people who are on the list were implicated in wrongdoing. He said he had allowed the names to be made public in the interests of open justice after the applications for anonymity were opposed by media organisations.

The names were unveiled in a preliminary hearing for a case brought against Barclays by Guardian Care Homes. It is seeking £37m, having alleged that it was mis-sold interest rate hedging products, based on Libor rates. Barclays is contesting the case, and argues it is owed £70m by Guardian.

The action is seen as a test case over the mis-selling of interest rate swaps, which were sold as a means of protecting firms against rising interest rates. The anonymity request was brought by the 104 independently of Barclays. Some 207 email accounts were investigated as part of the Libor inquiry.

Barclays has said it fired five employees after an internal investigation into how its Libor rates were submitted, and disciplined another eight people. A number of other bankers identified in the investigations have since independently left the bank.

Barclays said: "This started as an alleged mis-selling case which the bank considers has no merit. The addition of a claim based on what happened with Libor does not change the bank's view. The fact that someone's documents were reviewed by the bank during its review of millions of documents does not mean that such person was involved in any wrongdoing."

Antony Jenkins offered more contrition for Barclays' past sins at the World Economic Forum in Davos. The new chief executive's attempts to draw a line under the scandals the bank has been involved in have repeatedly been overshadowed by fresh revelations about its past business practices.

Mr Jenkins said the company was addressing past mistakes but admitted that more needed to be done to restore confidence in the beleaguered business. He added: "The industry, and Barclays, got it wrong on occasions. We were too aggressive, we were too short-term focused and too self-serving."

Analysts are expecting more than 3,000 job cuts at the 23,000-strong investment bank.

The Independent revealed this week that hundreds more roles are set to be "offshored" to India as part of a drive to cut costs. The company is widely expected to close down its controversial tax planning unit and cease trading in "soft" commodities, such as grain, both of which have attracted adverse comment.

Broker caught up Icap rates probe

Icap, the broker run by the former Tory party treasurer Michael Spencer, has admitted that it is under investigation by regulators over the alleged setting of Libor interest rates.

The company said a subsidiary that facilitates trading between different banks is being formally investigated.

Icap, as a broker, does not appear on any of the rate-setting Libor panels. But the Financial Services Authority and other regulators are thought to be looking at individual traders at the brokerage and other firms that could have played a role as conduits.

Icap's brokers arrange trades involving a huge range of financial instruments between different banks, allowing them to transact anonymously with each other.

The Libor fixing scandal involved traders at several banks, with Barclays and UBS so far having paid huge fines and Royal Bank of Scotland expected to follow within days.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
ebooks
ebooksAn introduction to the ground rules of British democracy
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Money & Business

Recruitment Genius: Collections Agent

£14000 - £16000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company was established in...

SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant

£20000 - £25000 per annum + OTE 40k: SThree: SThree are a global FTSE 250 busi...

SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant

£20000 - £25000 per annum + competitive: SThree: SThree are a global FTSE 250 ...

Reach Volunteering: Trustees with Finance, Fundraising and IT skills

Voluntary and unpaid, reasonable expenses reimbursable: Reach Volunteering: St...

Day In a Page

Isis profits from destruction of antiquities by selling relics to dealers - and then blowing up the buildings they come from to conceal the evidence of looting

How Isis profits from destruction of antiquities

Robert Fisk on the terrorist group's manipulation of the market to increase the price of artefacts
Labour leadership: Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea

'If we lose touch we’ll end up with two decades of the Tories'

In an exclusive interview, Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea
Tunisia fears its Arab Spring could be reversed as the new regime becomes as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor

The Arab Spring reversed

Tunisian protesters fear that a new law will whitewash corrupt businessmen and officials, but they are finding that the new regime is becoming as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor
King Arthur: Legendary figure was real and lived most of his life in Strathclyde, academic claims

Academic claims King Arthur was real - and reveals where he lived

Dr Andrew Breeze says the legendary figure did exist – but was a general, not a king
Who is Oliver Bonas and how has he captured middle-class hearts?

Who is Oliver Bonas?

It's the first high-street store to pay its staff the living wage, and it saw out the recession in style
Earth has 'lost more than half its trees' since humans first started cutting them down

Axe-wielding Man fells half the world’s trees – leaving us just 422 each

However, the number of trees may be eight times higher than previously thought
60 years of Scalextric: Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones

60 years of Scalextric

Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones
Theme parks continue to draw in thrill-seekers despite the risks - so why are we so addicted?

Why are we addicted to theme parks?

Now that Banksy has unveiled his own dystopian version, Christopher Beanland considers the ups and downs of our endless quest for amusement
Tourism in Iran: The country will soon be opening up again after years of isolation

Iran is opening up again to tourists

After years of isolation, Iran is reopening its embassies abroad. Soon, there'll be the chance for the adventurous to holiday there
10 best PS4 games

10 best PS4 games

Can’t wait for the new round of blockbusters due out this autumn? We played through last year’s offering
Transfer window: Ten things we learnt

Ten things we learnt from the transfer window

Record-breaking spending shows FFP restraint no longer applies
Migrant crisis: UN official Philippe Douste-Blazy reveals the harrowing sights he encountered among refugees arriving on Lampedusa

‘Can we really just turn away?’

Dead bodies, men drowning, women miscarrying – a senior UN figure on the horrors he has witnessed among migrants arriving on Lampedusa, and urges politicians not to underestimate our caring nature
Nine of Syria and Iraq's 10 world heritage sites are in danger as Isis ravages centuries of history

Nine of Syria and Iraq's 10 world heritage sites are in danger...

... and not just because of Isis vandalism
Girl on a Plane: An exclusive extract of the novelisation inspired by the 1970 Palestinian fighters hijack

Girl on a Plane

An exclusive extract of the novelisation inspired by the 1970 Palestinian fighters hijack
Why Frederick Forsyth's spying days could spell disaster for today's journalists

Why Frederick Forsyth's spying days could spell disaster for today's journalists

The author of 'The Day of the Jackal' has revealed he spied for MI6 while a foreign correspondent