Diamond Joins List of Exiled Financial Leaders: Timeline

Former Barclays Chief Executive Officer Robert Diamond
Robert Diamond stepped down as Barclays chief executive officer. Photographer: Chris Ratcliffe/Bloomberg

Robert Diamond’s resignation from Barclays Plc adds to the list of chairmen or chief executive officers at the world’s largest banks who were replaced after losses or accusations of mismanagement. The timeline below provides a summary of the circumstances surrounding two dozen departures starting in 2007.

July 2007 Peter Wuffli, CEO UBS AG Replaced after shutting Dillon Read hedge fund unit at a cost of $300 million and suffering defections by senior bankers.

October 2007 Stan O’Neal, Chairman and CEO Merrill Lynch & Co. Removed after reporting a third-quarter loss that was six times what the firm had forecast three weeks earlier.

November 2007 Charles Prince, Chairman and CEO Citigroup Inc. Stepped down after the bank, the largest in the U.S. at the time, warned of as much as $11 billion in writedowns on top of $6 billion for the third quarter.

January 2008 James Cayne, Chairman and CEO Bear Stearns Cos. Lost CEO title as firm spiraled toward collapse in July, in part because of mortgage-related losses. He retained chairman title until takeover by JPMorgan Chase & Co.

April 2008 Marcel Ospel, Chairman UBS AG Gave up post as the bank, battered by writedowns from the U.S. subprime mortgage market, reported an $11.9 billion first-quarter loss. Swiss banking regulators helped force Ospel’s resignation, according to subsequent accounts.

April 2008 Daniel Bouton, Chairman and CEO Societe Generale SA Replaced as CEO after bank revealed that employee Jerome Kerviel amassed 50 billion euros in positions backed by fake hedges and false documents, resulting in a record 4.9 billion-euro trading loss. Resigns as chairman effective May 6, 2009.

June 2008 Ken Thompson, CEO Wachovia Corp. Ousted after acquisition of Golden West Financial Corp. led to mounting losses on mortgages. The bank was on the verge of collapse later in the year when it was sold to Wells Fargo & Co.

June 2008 Martin Sullivan, CEO American International Group Inc. Replaced after the insurer’s bets on derivatives tied to mortgage debt soured, triggering demands for collateral that the firm ultimately couldn’t meet.

July 2008 Angelo Mozilo, Chairman and CEO Countrywide Financial Corp. Departed as Bank of America Corp. completed takeover, saving firm from bankruptcy. Countrywide’s lax loan standards later contributed to more than $40 billion in losses and writedowns.

September 2008 Daniel Mudd, CEO Fannie Mae Dismissed when the government seized control of the mortgage finance company to prevent its collapse as defaults soared.

September 2008 Richard Syron, Chairman and CEO Freddie Mac Ousted as the government seized control of Freddie Mac to prevent its collapse as mortgage defaults set national records.

September 2008 Kerry Killinger, Chairman and CEO Washington Mutual Inc. Fired from CEO role, and the bank failed later that month under weight of mortgage defaults. He was ousted as chairman as of July 1.

September 2008 Richard Fuld, Chairman and CEO Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. Resigned as CEO as the firm, once the largest underwriter of mortgage-backed securities, headed for the biggest bankruptcy in U.S. history.

September 2008 Robert Willumstad, CEO American International Group Inc. Replaced three months into his tenure as the government took control to prevent AIG’s demise from collapsing the entire financial system.

October 2008 Fred Goodwin, CEO Royal Bank of Scotland Group Plc Replaced following a bailout of the bank by the British government. The UK became majority stakeholder as a plan to issue emergency shares failed.

December 2008 David Drumm, CEO Anglo Irish Bank Corp. Stepped down the day after Chairman Sean Fitzpatrick quit for not fully disclosing $124 million in loans from the bank.

January 2009 John Thain, CEO Merrill Lynch & Co. Ousted by Bank of America Corp. CEO Kenneth D. Lewis after disputes over losses and bonuses that soured the bank’s takeover of Merrill Lynch.

February 2009 Brian Goggin, CEO Bank of Ireland Plc Retired as the bank prepared to accept a cash injection of 3.5 billion euros from the Irish government.

April 2009 Eugene Sheehy, CEO Allied Irish Banks Plc Announced plans to depart after insisting the bank didn’t need extra capital to combat losses on property loans. The bank had to raise 5 billion euros, including a government bailout.

November 2009 Al de Molina, CEO GMAC Inc. (Ally Financial Inc.) Resigned at request of the board after two years trying to turn around the auto and home lender, which had reported losses in eight of the last nine quarters.

December 2009 Kenneth D. Lewis, Chairman and CEO Bank of America Corp. Stripped of chairman’s title at an April shareholder meeting, Lewis retired as CEO after Merrill Lynch acquisition triggered an expanded federal bailout and a clash with regulators.

September 2011 Oswald Gruebel, CEO UBS AG Resigned after the bank suffered a $2.3 billion loss from unauthorized trading in the London office.

May 2012 Rodrigo Rato, Chairman Bankia Quit amid a second government-led rescue of the bank, Spain’s biggest by assets.

July 2012 Robert Diamond, CEO Barclays Plc Resigned as CEO after the bank was accused of attempting to rig global interest rates. Chief Operating Officer Jerry Del Missier also left.

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