Barclays’ Agius to take helm at BBA

BARCLAYS chairman Marcus Agius yesterday announced he would step up to chair the British Bankers’ Association after HSBC chairman Stephen Green resigned to take up a new appointment as UK minister for trade and investment.

Agius, a former Lazard investment banker, has chaired Barclays since the beginning of 2007.

He has maintained a lower profile during the financial crisis than some of his peers, including Green himself, who has proved himself unafraid to call on bankers to show restraint on thorny issues such as remuneration while at the same time defending the role of the City.

In his new role, Agius will support BBA chief executive Angela Knight, the banking industry’s staunchest defender in the face of the criticism heaped upon it in the wake of the crunch.

“[Agius] has helped the global universal bank grow and successfully weather the last three years’ financial turbulence,” Knight said.

“He brings a sound understanding of the City, the key issues facing the industry and an international perspective which reflects well the BBA’s broad global membership.”

The Barclays chairman takes up his new role with immediate effect.