James E. Staley

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James E. Staley
Jes Staley.jpg
Location New York

James "Jes" Staley is the former chief executive officer of Barclays. He joined the company in that role on December 1, 2015.[1] Staley resigned from the bank in November 2021 after a dispute with British financial regulators over how he described his ties with the convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein.[2]

He was previously managing partner at BlueMountain Capital Management LLC and a former JPMorgan Chase & Co. executive. He joined BlueMountain in early 2013 after more than three decades at JPMorgan.

He was appointed CEO of Barclays on October 28, 2015.[3] Starting in December 2015, he led the UK lender through a period of major restructuring.[4] [5]

While CEO at Barclays, Staley came under investigation by British bank regulators for trying to reveal a whistle-blower who criticized one of his senior hires. In April 2018 he was fined 642,430-pounds ($833,000), and received a cut to his pay from the board over the whistleblower issue.[6] Barclays was also fined $15 million by New York regulators.

He also lost a big client, the private equity firm Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Company, which was angered by Staley’s attempt to help his brother-in-law’s business interests at what KKR saw as its expense. He weathered calls to throw him out at an annual shareholder meeting in May 2017.[7]

In February 2020 it was reported that Staley was also being investigated over his ties to the disgraced financier Jeffrey Epstein, whose connections to a bevy of prominent financiers came under the spotlight after his arrest.[8]

Staley is a member of the board of UBS, which he joined in early 2015. He is also a member of an advisory committee to the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.


In 1979, Staley landed a job at Morgan Guaranty, a forerunner to JPMorgan that was then primarily a commercial lender and bond dealer. He ended up working for JPMorgan for more than 34 years. He advanced rapidly at the company, and in 2009 was named to run the entire investment bank. In 2004 he engineered JPMorgan’s $1.3 billion investment in the hedge fund Highbridge Capital, which added greatly to the client money JPMorgan Asset Management oversaw.[9]

His roles included chairman of the corporate and investment banking unit and chief executive of JPMorgan's investment bank. Before becoming CEO, he helped the investment management division double assets under management to $1.3 trillion.[10]

He was removed as chief executive in July 2012, after JPMorgan CEO Jamie Dimon reorganized the business segments and appointed two younger executives to be co-chiefs of commercial and investment banking. [11] Staley was at one time seen as a possible candidate to take over from Dimon as CEO of JPMorgan. [12]


Staley graduated from Bowdoin College with a degree in Economics.[13]