Pondering a Barclay's IB Spin-Off
The FT reported that Barclays (NYSE: BCS) might be getting a push from its shareholders to spin off its investment banking -- or, at least, cut back drastically. In terms of "good idea / bad idea," it might not be terrible, even if it is essentially a copy-cat move of UBS (NYSE: UBS) and a move that would be poorly timed from the perspective of selling low.
From a broader perspective though, the entire industry is scaling back -- whether actually reducing IB divisions or just redcuing risk appetites (see: Goldman Sachs (NYSE: GS)). For now this may jive with the direction of regulations and public perception, but at some point down the road we have to assume that somebody that's still willing to take risk is going to feast on the void that's being left behind.