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November 9, 2010    

Barclays bonus pot unveiled

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by Kay Murchie

Banking giant Barclays has today admitted that bonuses for its staff total just over £2 billion, despite the bank admitting these were “challenging markets”.

It said it has set aside £1.5 billion to pay out in bonuses for its 25,000 staff so far this year and comes despite the bank’s investment unit, Barclays Capital, unveiling a loss of £182 million in the third quarter.

The £1.5 billion is in addition to the £3 billion pay and bonus pool that the bank accumulated halfway through the year.

The announcement comes at a time when the subject of bonuses continue to spark public outrage.

Many argue that excessive bankers’ bonuses reward the risk-taking culture that led to the financial crisis.

Last month, leading think tank, the Centre for Economics and Business Research (CEBR), unveiled City bankers will be in receipt of a bonus pot of £7.3 billion this year.

The total is 4% lower than last year’s total and considerably lower than the £11 billion paid out at the height of the banking boom in 2007.

However, the new super-tax means that the Treasury will take a bigger slice of the bonus pool than City bankers, according to the CEBR.

However, the sheer size of bonuses is set to lead to a year-long investigation after a recent survey revealed that 99% of people believe that top executives are overpaid.

The high pay commission, established think tank Compass and backed by the Joseph Rowntree charitable trust, will lead a commission into fairer pay.

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