Fifth of Barclays shareholders reject climate strategy

Nearly 20 per cent of Barclays shareholders have voted against its climate strategy for 2022.

The bank said that while it notes that a fifth of investors rejected its climate targets, there has been “extensive engagement” with stakeholders around the issue over the past year.

“We are aware of a spectrum of views across the share register, but we are pleased the majority of shareholders have supported the resolution and we will continue to engage around this issue and look forward to providing an update on green financing later in the year,” it said in a statement.

On Wednesday, activists gathered outside Barclays’ AGM to protest its funding of fossil fuels.

The backlash marks another blow for the bank, which last month announced a profit decline of £300 million for the first quarter of the year.

It told investors it was suspending its share buyback programme with the intention to relaunch “as soon as practicable”.

The delay to the programme comes as the British financial institution reports litigation and conduct charges of £0.5 billion relating to the “over-issuance of securities” by the bank in the US and customer remediation costs relating to a legacy loan portfolio.

It warned that the “ongoing geopolitical situation could put further pressure on already high levels of inflation” and “weigh on corporate profitability and consumer affordability levels”.

The bank added that with Covid-19 infection rates increasing around the world, labour shortages and supply chain constraints could be exacerbated.
FStech has approached Barclays for further comment.

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