Diamond says Barclays will boost wealth management

Barclays chief executive Bob Diamond says the bank plans to grow its wealth management business during 2012.

In an interview with Bloomberg Television last week, Diamond said wealth management is one of the two areas where shareholders should see growth, alongside Africa.

He said the business has seen double-digit growth in revenues and profits over the past two years.

He said: “Tom Kalaris, who runs that business with us, has a very specific five-year plan to move that business into the top tier and it should continue to see double-digit growth.”

Diamond said ringfencing of UK retail banks will lead to “Balkanisation”.

He said: “That ringfencing of the retail banking operations will increase the costs of retail and business banking in the UK.”

Bloomsbury Financial Planning partner Jason Butler says: “Banks see wealth management as a route to peddling high- margin products.”