BNY Mellon

John Gapper

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Antony Jenkins, Barclays’ new squeaky clean chief executive, is winning good reviews today for his attempt to turn his back on the “aggressive, short-termist” regime of his predecessor, Bob Diamond.

That includes shutting down the bank’s controversial, but very profitable, tax avoidance unit. Conveniently, the announcement coincides with an example of what exactly this unit was doing.

BNY Mellon Bank has just, very expensively, lost a tax battle with the US authorities over an extremely complex swap arrangement dreamed up by Barclays. The judgement will cost the US bank about $850m.