After yesterday's results, you could be forgiven for thinking that Barclays' once impressive investment bank is on the way to insignificance. There are almost certainly thousands more job cuts to come and there's almost certainly hundreds of millions - or billions - to be taken out of costs. But you can still get a job there. - Quietly, stealthily, Barclays is hiring.
The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) Register reveals at least 12 new front office hires in London this year. Recruiters say Barclays is marshalling its troops, especially in its focal business areas - IBD and equities.
Equity research has been a particular area of emphasis. In the past two months, Barclays has hired Victor Galliano, a senior Latin American banks researcher who (strangely) had previously worked for an organisation promoting Gibraltar as a financial centre. It's also hired Mark McVicar, formerly head of transportation research at Nomura, James Edward Zaremba, formerly an assistant manager for M&A transport pricing at Deloitte, who now covers aerospace and defence stocks. And it's hired Faisal Islam, who joined from PWC as a telecoms equity research analyst in December.
M&A hasn't been neglected either. Headhunters say Barclays has appointed "at least two" M&A juniors in recent weeks and that senior hires are in the pipeline. The bank is said to be building its healthcare M&A team after poaching Will Thompson from UBS in the final quarter of last year. For the moment, the FCA register simply shows that it's hired Monika Bukowska, an AVP in M&A from Commerzbank, Equity Capital Markets (ECM) hires are expected too - last month's news that Barclays had poached Philip Shelley, the UK co-head of corporate broking at Goldman Sachs, can be read as an indication that Barclays is determined to build its presence in UK ECM.
Most curiously, Barclays has also been adding to its fixed income sales and trading team. In the past month, it poached Michael Henneberg, an AVP in Nordic rates sales and solutions from Nomura and Amy Ginman, a rates trader from Goldman Sachs.
As the chart below - from Deutsche Bank researchers, helpfully clarifies, Barclays' fixed income sales and trading business isn't what it used to be. In the past two years, it's been wound down significantly.
While fixed income is being wound down, however, equities and investment banking are being pumped up (or at least that's the theory). M&A headhunters say Barclays isn't seen as a bad option in IBD. "At the junior end, they sell a good story," says one. "People recognize that the UK is an important centre for them," says another. "If you're working in M&A for Barclays in the UK, you're not in the worst seat in the world."