Khvalheim steps down at Barclays Capital

Grant Kvalheim, co-president of Barclays Capital, the investment banking unit of UK bank Barclays, resigned from his position yesterday.

Kvalheim’s fellow co-president Jerry del Missier will become Barclays Capital’s sole president under the remit of chief executive Bob Diamond. Kvalheim and del Missier had been running the investment banking arm together since 2005 following Diamond’s move to the bank’s main board.

According to reports, Diamond told staff that Kvalheim had opted to “take time away from the industry” and will be leaving at the end of the first quarter. Del Missier will move from London to New York, where Kvalheim was based.

The departure comes two months after the investment bank said it had written down the value of its debt securities by £1.3bn (US$2.55bn) as a result of the credit crunch, although this was less than some analysts had predicted.

Kvalheim is just the latest investment banking head to fall on his sword as a result of a bloated leverage tranches on the balance sheets following the collapse of the credit markets last summer. Jimmy Cayne of Bear Stearns, Charles Prince at Citi, Stan O’Neal at Merrill Lynch and Peter Wuffli have all fallen on their swords in recent months.