We may well get to watch a sizable good bank / bad bank plan in action before long. RBS has decided to go the fiscal hermaphrodite route (we understand the surgery is radical and risky enough that lots of capital infusions are being hung on the drip cart in preparation).
The Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) is to be split into a "good bank" and "bad bank" in a dramatic rescue restructuring in which assets worth several hundred billion pounds will be put up for sale.
Stephen Hester, RBS chief executive, will outline the plans this week as he unveils Britain's biggest-ever corporate loss of up to £28 billion. He will cut costs by more than £1 billion a year, a move expected to lead to the loss of about 20,000 jobs, more than half of which will be in Britain.
Large parts of the group's investment-banking business will be earmarked for sale or closed down. Its Asian operations and retail operations across central and eastern Europe will also be sold off.
All these operations will be bundled together in a "bad bank" inside the group, which will report its figures separately.
Given the almost caustic split between views on the wisdom of the "good bank / bad bank" method, it will be interesting to see how the process develops. What say you? Is this likely to turn out to be brilliant elective surgery or result in a lingering, hospital-acquired and antibiotic-resistant infection?
Radical revamp splits RBS in two [Times Online]