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Barclays shareholders vent anger over bankers' bonuses

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  • Barclays shareholders vent anger over bankers' bonuses

UK - Shareholders in Barclays have expressed their anger at bankers' bonuses by casting one in four votes against the bank's pay policy at its annual general meeting on 27 April.

Just over 2m votes - nearly 27% of the total - were used to oppose the bank's remuneration policy for the year ended 31 December 2011.

The total number of votes used was equivalent to just less than 63% of the group's issued share capital.

A similar rebellion took place against reappointing Alison Carnwath - chair of the bank's remuneration committee - as a director, with nearly 21% voting against.

There has been fierce media criticism of the pay deal agreed with Bob Diamond, Barclays' chief executive, who joined the bank at the beginning of last year.

Diamond's 2011 remuneration package is worth £17.7m (€21.7m), including a £2.7m bonus payment.

Before the AGM, Barclays had said it would subject half his bonus to additional performance requirements. But this was not enough to head off a sizeable rebellion.

George Dallas, director of corporate governance at F&C, said: "We voted against the report because we do not believe the remuneration committee exercised sufficient discretion, by granting substantial bonus awards for a year in which the company's performance was mixed."

He added: "We believe there to be an imbalance in the remuneration to company staff and returns to shareholders. We would hope the board will clarify its interpretation of this vote, and how this may affect the company's remuneration structure and implementation going forward."

Barclays' pre-tax profits for 2011 were £5.9bn, down 3% from £6.1bn in 2010.

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