Forget the future, if you want to work for a great investment bank in the present, try Barclays (Capital).
So say the latest Euromoney Awards for Excellence. Barclays has received awards for: the best global flow house, the best global debt house, the best investment bank in the US, and the best investment bank in the UK.
In rates, FX and credit, Barclays, "stands out this year," says Euromoney. Not only has it, "outperformed" across rates, credit, FX and equities, but it's invested heavily in preparing for the centralised clearing of OTC derivatives by the end of this year.
Guglielmo Sartori di Borgoricco, head of distribution at Barclays, explains:
Euromoney stresses too the great successes Barclays has had in building its seemingly vulnerable equities business.
Barclays has "excelled amid the storm" in the SSA (supras, sub-sovereigns and agencies) bond markets, says Euromoney. It has a, "top tier US franchise," "strength in cross-border liquidity," and made "great progress in high yield."
"We have a pretty unique story," says Jim Glascott, head of global DCM for Barclays, "It has taken a long time to get this franchise where it is today."
"One investment bank has not only kept a clean sheet, it has also managed to make headway in all areas of investment banking..." says Euromoney. The first part of this sentence may no longer apply.
Jerry Del Missier is quoted: "We came out of the crisis in a stronger strategic position and that has allowed us to continue to win market share and build our franchise," he says.
"Barclays investment banking activities in the UK have gone from strength to strength," says Euromoney. It's always been a top debt house, but it's now "outperformed expectations" in equities and M&A. In UK M&A it's increased its market share to 20.9%, from 10.9%.
In the light of Barclays' achievements, its easy to see why Rich Ricci was emotional when he told Barclays traders Bob Diamond was going.
Research firm Tricumen highlights Bob Diamond's immense achievements in turning Barclays into the firm lauded by Euromoney. As the graph below illustrates, revenues have grown at a rate far in excess of the rest of the industry.
This wasn't coincidental,says Tricumen: Barclays worked hard to achieve this growth.
"BarCap’s Rates business was an early adopter of change as Deutsche Bank hire, Alan Burnell, merged bond and swap trading teams and emphasised electronic trading. On the exotics side, Domenico Azzollini arrived in 2004 from J.P.Morgan to build a highly competitive offering with a great expertise in inflation trading and pension solutions. The debt capital markets division steadily increased market share, with revenues enhanced from involvement in the UK government’s Private Finance Initiative and the Roger Jenkins led Structured Capital Markets team."
Barclays is best in class when it comes to middle and back office functions too, says Tricumen:
"Barclays Capital’s growth has not been down to the front office alone; many of our sources commented that the risk functions have a more ‘business friendly’ approach than is the case at other banks. The bank has also focused on staying ahead in the middle office and operations functions, for example by hiring staff with derivatives expertise to modernise syndicated loan processing."
Conclusion: until Friday last week, Barclays was an exemplary investment bank to work for. But does this still hold now?