Barclays Earnings Call Nuggets: Outlook and FICC Business Update

On Wednesday, Barclays (NYSE:BCS) reported its third quarter earnings and discussed the following topics in its earnings conference call. Take a look.


Jason Napier – Deutsche Bank: First, there has been a lot of comment in the media particularly from members of the Bank of England’s FPC Committee, on bank capital adequacy. I wonder whether you would be able to be explicit as to the capital targets that Barclays has been set, say, for 2013. Second question, both of the Swiss banks are now talking openly about having leverage targets for balance sheet leverage on a simple basis. We understand that the way (you) are also looking at sort of most information of that kind of nature. I wonder whether (that’s stage at) where we can know what those sorts of target is going to look like, how it might be calculated and so on? Then lastly just looking at margins as sort of picture of stability in the third quarter, and I just wonder given sort of some of the more positive things that are going on in terms of the FLS plus some of the pricing in the U.K. deposit market LIBOR and a smaller liquidity pool, are we looking at a picture of sort of stable margins from here and what would be the rest sort of expectations into next year on NIM?

Catalysts are critical to discovering winning stocks. Check out our newest CHEAT SHEET stock picks now.

Antony Jenkins – Chief Executive, Retail and Business Banking: So I’ll take the first and the third point, I’ll ask Chris to comment on the leverage. So on capital, we acknowledge that this has been an area of intense focus for many commentators in the space over recent weeks and of course it’s an ongoing discussion between us and our regulators many of which I have participate in directly. We have received a letter from the FSA which quoted an absolute Core Tier 1 capital target for the end of 2013, which was the same target we had previously shared with the FSA as part of our capital plan. We continue to operate at a Core Tier 1 capital level of 11.2%, which is the strong level and we believe that this dialog with the regulators will continue, but will continue to be in a positive sense. We are confident that we can meet requirements on capital for Core Tier 1 and the broader capital spec going forward. So I would say that the dialog is constructive which is perhaps not always the impression you might receive, but it is indeed that. On margins, we do think that our margins are broadly going to be stable from here going forward, but Chris do you want to touch on the leverage question?

Chris Lucas – Group Finance Director: Let me touch on leverage. There is a lot of work going on and a lot of interest by the FCC and the regulators, about leverage, while there isn’t yet is a target that’s been set for any institution that we’re aware of. Working with them in terms of (hedging producers) like the definition of leverage and they have requested that there will be some disclosure of that at the end of the year. That will be the next step and I think in terms of capital requirements or leverage requirements that will follow into 2013 and beyond.

FICC Business

Tom Rayner – Exane BNP Paribas: Can I have a couple please. The first one on your FICC business. Just trying to get a better handle on the sort of quarterly progression because obviously Q2 in terms of revenue, you outperformed your peers quite markedly down 18, versus sort of (circled down 40). Q3 peers are up (circle) 15%, you are down 20%. I am just trying to get a sense. When I looked at the year-on-year progression in the first three quarter of this year. It looks fairly stable plus 9%, plus 15%, plus 10%. Most of your peers are having big swings positive and negatives. I’m just trying to get what it is about your FICC business that sort of FICC business that sort of gives you a different and possibly less volatile progression in terms of revenue and I have second question if I may on capital?

Antony Jenkins – Chief Executive, Retail and Business Banking: You want to ask your question Tom, and then we will.

Tom Rayner – Exane BNP Paribas: The second really is in light of the sort of announcements today on the new enquiries in sort of from U.S. regulators and whether you are still comfortable that sort of 9.5% fully loaded is adequate in light of sort of potential, I guess the provisions to be taken at some point in the future?

Antony Jenkins – Chief Executive, Retail and Business Banking: I’ll answer both of those questions, Chris may want to add on the capital question. So let’s talk about the Investment Bank performance in Q3 particularly with FICC. Our model is a conservative model which means that we tend to outperform our competitors when markets are weaker and perform less well and then when markets are stronger. You can see that pattern in Q2 and in Q3. It’s important to note that in terms of flow, we haven’t lost any market share in Q3, so I would describe the performance in Q3 is actually pretty solid. I’m pleased also that we continue to manage our cost (growth) our cost to net income ratio and that we’ve improved our compensation ratio from 46% last year to 39%. Also important to note, of course, that our ROE was strong at 14.2%, up from 12% in 2011 and that would put us in the top quartile of our peers. So I think this is a reflection of our business model as much as it’s a reflection of anything else. I know you asked your questions specifically about FICC, but we’re particularly pleased with our performance in equities which is up 26% quarter-on-quarter. With regard to capital and the disclosures that we’ve made today, we continue to believe that the organization is adequately capitalized given everything that we can foresee, but I don’t know Chris, if you want to add anything to it?

Chris Lucas – Group Finance Director: I think that’s right. One of the things we have is a (indiscernible) of numbers, which as you have seen right, it shows a fully loaded Core Tier 1 ratio and the pro forma (to somewhere) 13% and 9.5%. I think probably better comparison with our ratios today is the 10.4% which we’ll refer to as the transitional Core Tier 1 ratio and at that level – with that level of capital, I absolutely think we’re appropriately capitalized.