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RBS Strengthens Banking Business With Harry Potter-Themed Gala

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In recent weeks, we've received word that RBS will be "downsizing" bonuses by "at least" 30 percent this year; that it may lay off around ten percent of the staff in the coming months; and that employees have had their holiday party celebrations capped at one bag of (fun size) chips per head. So we were in need of some good news for the royalest bank of Scotland and here it is-- these chippies can throw a party! Specifically, one centered around a children's novel, which set the firm back a pretty penny but you know what? It was worth it and sorry, they're not sorry.

About 400 executives and clients were treated to entertainment including a re-creation of the wizards' high street Diagon Alley, flying Quidditch players and swooping Dementors.

The party for investment bankers, which was held late last month, is thought to have cost close to £100,000 at around £250 per guest.

The TaxPayers' Alliance claimed taxpayers would be outraged but RBS said: “Spending time with customers at events like this one strengthens our business.”

Bailed-out RBS throws bankers Harry Potter party [This Is London via BI]


Layoffs/Hiring Watch '12: RBS

The bad news is that 600 of the Queen's corgis are being let go. The good news, while it probably comes as little solace to those who will no longer receive birthday chickens, is that 300 or so new ones will be hired in their place. State-backed lender Royal Bank of Scotland is making more than 600 staff redundant as a result of legislation due to come into force at the end of the year, bringing total staff reductions at the bank since its 2008 bailout to around 36,000. RBS, 82 percent owned by the government, said the jobs would go as a result of new UK rules requiring retail financial products such as savings and investment vehicles to be sold by more highly qualified staff and charged a fee. "As a response to this we will be reducing the number of roles by 618 across the UK and creating 351 new roles," an RBS spokesman said on Tuesday. "Having to cut jobs is the most difficult part of our work to rebuild RBS and repay taxpayers for their support. We continue to make efficiencies across our business to deliver greater value toour customers and shareholders," the spokesman added. RBS Job Loss Hits 36,000 [Reuters]

Layoffs Watch '12: RBS

Like Bank of America, RBS has some big goals for the coming year, chief among them being the firing of several thousand investment bankers. (For those skeptical they can do it, according to a PowerPoint presentation presented yesterday, re: the "exits," quite a bit of progress has already been made.) Royal Bank of Scotland, Britain’s biggest government-owned lender, said it will cut 300 more jobs at its investment banking unit and is “on track” with its plan to exit businesses. RBS will eliminate 3,800 jobs at the division by the fourth quarter of next year, compared with an earlier target of 3,500, according to slides based on a presentation delivered by John Hourican, chief of markets and international banking, to analysts Monday. About 3,000 of the cuts will have completed this year, RBS said...The bank’s control of costs is “ongoing,” said Chris Kyle, chief financial officer of markets and international banking, at the presentation. “We will almost certainly hit this year’s number” in terms of the guidance, he said. Royal Bank Of Scotland Cuts 300 More Jobs At Investment Bank [Bloomberg] RBS Markets Investor Roundtable [RBS]