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Barclays (BCS) Continues to Shrink: Is Brazilian Unit Next?

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Barclays PLCBCS is expediting its efforts to shed non-core assets and scale back businesses in less profitable markets, thereby further shrinking its Barclays Non-Core segment. Now, the company is reviewing its presence in Latin American countries for potential divestiture.

As per Sky News, Barclays is in preliminary talks with prospective buyers for its Brazilian investment banking business. This is part of "wider restructuring led by the new chairman" John McFarlane, and triggered by the fact that the Latin American economy is struggling.

The Sky News report quoting insider information also stated that Barclays had already started shrinking its presence in Brazil about two years ago. The company had shifted its research analysts' team covering Brazilian stocks to London, Mexico City and New York.

Nonetheless, Barclays continues to provide fixed-income advisory and risk solutions services in Brazil. Further, the company is expected to maintain a limited presence in the country even after the sale of its investment banking operation.

Notably, Barclays Non-Core segment was created in 2014 with an aim to shed investment banking operations in less profitable markets, European retail and non-core banking operations. Earlier this month, the company announced the sale of its UK Secured Lending portfolio to a group of investors led by The Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. GS .

Prior to that, Barclays divested its Portuguese Retail Banking, Wealth and Investment Management businesses and part of its Corporate Banking operations to Spain's Bankinter. Apart from these, the company also vended a number of other non-core businesses across the globe.

Barclays' efforts to restructure and streamline operations will go a long way in improving profitability. Of late, the company has been facing a number of legal issues which have significantly undermined its profitability. However, we believe that under the new leadership, the company will be able to overcome challenges. This would also help it improve capital position.

Apart from Barclays, another major British bank - HSBC Holdings plc's HSBC - is also trying to shrink its global footprints and focus on traditional banking operations. In Aug 2015, HSBC sold its entire Brazilian business to Banco Bradesco S.A. BBD in an all-cash deal valued at $5.2 billion.

Currently, Barclays carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).

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BARCLAY PLC-ADR (BCS): Free Stock Analysis Report

GOLDMAN SACHS (GS): Free Stock Analysis Report

BANCO BRADESCO (BBD): Free Stock Analysis Report

HSBC HOLDINGS (HSBC): Free Stock Analysis Report

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.


The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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