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Barclays full-year net profit quadruples as corporate and investment bank booms

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Fog shrouds the Canary Wharf business district including global financial institutions Citigroup Inc., State Street Corp., Barclays Plc, HSBC Holdings Plc and the commercial office block No. 1 Canada Square, on the Isle of Dogs on November 05, 2020 in London, England.
Dan Kitwood | Getty Images News | Getty Images

LONDON — Barclays on Wednesday reported a full-year net profit of GBP6.38 billion ($8.67 billion) for 2021, ahead of analyst expectations of GBP5.75 billion, as its corporate and investment banking division boomed.

Fourth-quarter net income attributable to shareholders came in at GBP1.12 billion, outstripping a mean forecast of GBP756.5 million, according to Refinitiv data.

The figures marked a significant improvement from the GBP1.53 billion net profit reported in 2020 and GBP220 million in the fourth-quarter of that year, as the U.K. navigated fresh nationwide Covid-19 lockdowns.

The British lender endured a turbulent final quarter of 2021, with longtime CEO Jes Staley resigning in November following an investigation by regulators into his relationship with Jeffrey Epstein. He was replaced by C.S. Venkatakrishnan.

After the bank’s third-quarter earnings, Staley said 2021 was going to be “quite a year” for Barclays, as a significant boost from its corporate investment banking division continued to propel the group’s return on tangible equity — a key ratio used to assess profitability.

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