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Barclays to close tax advice unit

11th Feb 2013
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Barclays bank is to shut its controversial tax advice unit, chief executive Antony Jenkins confirmed today.

The bank will continue to help customers with their tax affairs, but it will cease to play a hand in aiding tax avoidance.

Last week, Lord Lawson accused Barclays of “large scale tax avoidance” at the Parliamentary Commission on Banking Standards.

At its peak, the unit reportedly accounted for most of the bank’s investment banking revenue. The unit will be cut as part of a wider strategic review of the bank, as Jenkins attempts to repair the damage done under former chief executive Bob Diamond's watch.

The bank also announced their strategic review today, under which 3,700 jobs will be cut, half of which from its investment bank.

This comes as the bank announced that they are aiming to reduce costs by £1.7bn as they reported a pre-tax profit plunge of £246m in 2012.

“Barclays is changing. We intend to change what Barclays does and how we do it and have set out clear commitments against which our progress can be measured," Jenkins said.

Barclays has been in the headlines over the last few weeks as its wrestles with interest rate swaps, insurance mis-selling scandals and fines of £290m by US and UK regulators.

Its finance director Chris Lucas and group general counsel Mark Harding also announced their resignations last week.

Around this time last year, the bank became the target for two retrospective measures to close corporation tax avoidance schemes worth £500m.

The BBC also announced today that its Panorama programme found the bank misled shareholders in 2008 about Manchester City owner Sheikh Mansour's investment of £3bn, when the money actually came from the Abu Dhabi government. 

According to the bank, BBC reported, the mistake in accounts was a "drafting error". 

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By stuart1696w
13th Feb 2013 12:31

Barclays Tax Avoidance closure

So, will the Barclays Management ( and Politicians for that matter)  also never buy duty free goods at airports, never transfer any investments to their spouses, never organise their affairs to minimise Inherirtance Tax, the list is endless of legislation WRITTEN BY GOVERNMENTS AND ENSHRINED IN LAW to enable people to organise their affairs to be tax efficient. What hypocrisy, humbug and poppycock.

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