It’s not just senior staff at Barclays’ investment bank who’ve had their bonuses paid at a different time this year. Recruiters in London say the British bank also switched its analysts to a different payment schedule. “Analysts at Barclays are usually paid in the summer,” says the head of one recruitment firm in London. “But they’ve just been switched to a March payment cycle along with the rest of the bank.”
Because Barclays’ experienced analysts already received bonuses last summer, their March payments – made last week – were expected to have been pro-rated on a six month basis. Instead, Barclays seems to have taken the opportunity to pay a lot lower than expected.
“We’ve spoken to people at Barclays who got 20% instead of the 50% pro-rated bonuses they were expecting,” says the recruiter. “Even before Easter we had three or four CVs from them.”
Barclays didn’t respond to a request to comment. However, another recruiter, also speaking on condition of anonymity, said that junior bonuses at the bank had been “mixed”, with some people paid more than the previous year.
Barclays cut the bonus pool in its investment bank to £976m ($1.4bn) for 2015, down from $1.1bn a year earlier. The bank has also been working hard to keep its junior bankers happy, however, with a new appraisal system and limits on working hours.
Despite a weak start to the year for investment banking divisions in Europe, banks continue to beef up their IBD teams with external hires. Goldman Sachs just hired Ebrahim Baydoun, an equity research and IBD analyst who’d spent 13 months at Citi, onto its investment banking programme, for example.