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Banking

Barclays will cut thousands of jobs this year

British bank Barclays has announced it's cutting thousands of jobs in the course of this year to boost profitability and help along in-house restructuring. The lender has gone through a series of scandals lately.

British lender Barclays reported on Tuesday it planned to cut several thousand jobs this year. The bank has been plagued by a series of scandals recently, including a $450 million (336 million euros) fine for the Libor rate-rigging scandal.

Barclays said it plunged into an annual net loss in 2012 of 1.04 billion pounds (1.22 billion euros), after posting a profit of over three billion pounds in the previous year.

Barclays said in a statement that it would "reduced the headcount by at least 3,700 across the group, including 1,800 in the Corporate & Investment Bank and 1,900 in Europe Retail and Business Banking."

New moral standards

Over the weekend, the bank indicated it would close a profitable, but controversial tax advisory business as part of a drive to clean up the lender's image.

CEO Antony Jenkins had signaled he wanted to end activities that could cause reputational damage. "The old ways weren't the right way to behave, nor did they deliver the right results - for banks themselves or for wider society," Jenkins said according to extracts from a speech provided to the media a couple of days ago.

"Banks that fail to change will become failing banks," Jenkins added, delivering a broadside against former transactions that were carried out with the primary objective of accessing tax benefits. Jenkins said while those transactions had been legal, they no longer comply with Barclays' new tax principles.

hg/hc (Reuters, AFP)