There certainly is a price to be paid for excellent performance. Just ask Barclays Capital. According to The Telegraph, 38% of its 2.9 billion pound cost base last year went to performance bonuses for 4,500 top bankers, including a hefty 15 million pound reward for CEO Bob Diamond. That comes out to an average of about 250,000 pounds for each of the rest, and represents a two percentage increase in bonus allocation over 2004. Not that the bank is complaining; last year it reported a record 5.28 billion pounds in pretax profit, an increase of about 25%.