“You have reached the offices of Barclays Capital. Please hold on for the next available operator,” announces the recorded voice that answers the phone number that for many, many years belonged to Lehman Brothers.
The transformation of Lehman into Barclays Capital is well underway in New York City. This morning, former Lehman employees arrived at their offices to find the physical Lehman Brothers sign on the outside of the building had already been removed. Small signs reading Barclays Capital have been placed throughout the interior. Last week, the colourful neon sign that fronts the building, which had depicted scenes of industry and waves crashing over a beach before Lehman’s crash, was changed to display a fixed blue banner with Barclays emblazoned in white.
The Financial Times reported over the weekend that Lehman employees are unhappys that Barclays is not taking most of Lehman’s Asia and Europe business, which are being acquired by the Japanese bank Nomura. Employees we spoke with confirmed this, saying that the division had left many relationships unsettled.
“How do we deal with our counterparts in London? We’re all still on the same IT systems now,” one Lehman turned Barclays employee said.
Meanwhile, Lehman employees may not face the bonus wipeout many feared, according to BreakingView’s Hugo Dixon.
“Barclays has set aside up to $2.5bn and Nomura has reportedly made $1bn available for European employees alone. In both cases, the bonuses are based on what was paid in 2007. There are also some wild numbers doing the rounds about what the top guys in New York are receiving,” Dixon writes.
He notes that wiped out shareholders and creditors facing huge losses may not be entirely happy to hear that employees are getting $3.5 billion in bonuses.
Business Insider Emails & Alerts
Site highlights each day to your inbox.