Bob Diamond: family guy

2 May 2013

Marilyn Monroe didn’t do it for the money, and neither did Bob Diamond. Seriously, the man dubbed the ‘unacceptable face of banking’ is just a regular family guy; Jimmy Stewart rather than Gordon Gekko. The recovering financier has told the New York Times:

‘This is going to sound arrogant as hell but I never did anything for money. I never set money as a goal. It was a result. And if you look at how Jennifer and I and our three kids have lived our lives, as soon as we had any money at all, we created a family foundation. The only car I own, honestly, is an 11-year-old Jeep on Nantucket. I think Jennifer and I have always had a great home for our kids. We really like to take vacations with them, so those are good. But we don’t have a boat, we don’t have fancy cars. I think we have lived well, but it hasn’t been about accumulation or anything like that.’

You can’t blame the man for defending himself, especially after the pasting he got at the end of 2012. In fact, Mr Steerpike admires him for it. Diamond’s recollection of that period is almost touching. He was preparing to be mauled by the Treasury Select Committee when his spirited daughter Nell wrote a tweet suggesting that George Osborne and Ed Miliband become acquainted with Diamond’s derivative. The tweet went very viral, very quickly. Diamond claims that she told him, ‘Dad, I think I did something really bad. I think I’m in trouble.’ To which he apparently replied, ‘Sweetie, I love you. That’s so nice. I think we’re probably all in trouble.’

And so he was; but he’s not having much trouble with interviews these days.

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Show comments
  • Md.Sultan Mahmud
  • Baron

    When you have a minute, Steerpike, could you explain to Baron why the uproar about the Libor manipulation died out almost immediately after the guy got booted out from the bank he ran successfully for years without any need for public money?

    • iamdamosuzuki

      There is a HUGE misconception about Barclays – Diamond wasn’t the chief exec until the last couple of years. He and a group of about 4 others built Barcap. His record in those two years was woeful – I know, I was there! He’s an investment banker, nothing more, nothing less. The Barclays PLC board was persuaded it would be a good ide to make him Chief exec (he’d have left otherwise) BUT there were many, many dissenting voices who wuestioned his honesty (based on Barcap’s history), his maturity (discussed as high as board level) and his humility.

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