Barclays sorry for Libor as profits top £4bn

City A.M. Reporter
Barclays said it was confident it will repair the damage caused by an interest rate rigging scandal that has rocked it and the banking industry after beating expectations with a £4bn profit.

"We are sorry for the issues that have emerged over recent weeks and recognise that we have disappointed our customers and shareholders," chairman Marcus Agius said.

"I am confident we can, and will, repair the reputational damage done to our business in their eyes and those of all our stakeholders," Agius said, reaffirming a commitment to deliver a return on equity of 13 per cent.

Barclays reported an underlying pretax profit of £4.2 bn for the six months to the end of June, above an average forecast of £3.8bn pounds from analysts polled by the company and up 13 per cent from a year ago.

The bank is searching for a new chief executive and chairman after they quit in the wake of a record £290m fine last month for rigging the Libor interest rate benchmark, sparking fierce criticism about its culture and risk-taking.

Agius said the board was focused on filling those positions, but gave no update on likely timing.

Barclays' investment bank fared better than most rivals in a tough second quarter, with income of £3bn up 5 per cent from a year ago and down 12 per cent