My beech stick has a very hard bark that was stuck like glue. It seems to be impermeable, except where the stems (now knots) were. After several years and miles of walking and hiking it is still in the same condition as day 1. That is my only experience with leaving the bark on, except that with red cedar, I like the interplay of colors when I sand through varying amounts of bark after the fibrous outer bark is removed.
However, judging from the oak and hackberry sticks that fall into the back yard and then lie on my woodpile, untreated those barks loosen and ultimately spall off.
I wonder this: for permeable barks, do any finishes have adhesive properties that would serve to bind the bark to the sapwood? I suspect that the various oil-based finishes do not, but that the varnishes do. But to know the answer would require a good deal of experimentation.