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Is Tony Hayward in talks about an exit from BP?

The financial press is rife with rumours that BP has a board meeting organised for Monday during which the subject of chief executive Tony Hayward's position at the group will be discussed in great detail. There has been speculation for some time that Tony Hayward will be the fall guy with regards to the ongoing Gulf of Mexico crisis and indeed calls from the US authorities for somebody to be "blamed" for the tragedy. So is Tony Hayward about to fall on his sword?

The truth is that Tony Hayward is only one of a number of high-profile executives at BP but he is the one who will carry the can. However, despite the fact that his position would appear on the outside to be under threat he does have a number of aces up his sleeve with regards to termination payment talks. The company will want to draw a line under the Gulf of Mexico crisis thereby giving a relatively strong bargaining position to the company's current chief executive.

There have been rumours that the company's chairman could also be under threat but these appear to have subsided over the last few days with Tony Hayward taking the vast majority of the flack.

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