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Bonus Watch '14: UK Treasury Is Going To Stop RBS Right There

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Maybe some banks pay any old bonuses they want (despite continuing to lose money) in order to keep up with the Joneses, Goldmans, and JPMorgans of the world, but RBS isn't going to be one of them! Not while it lives under the government's house!

U.K. Financial Investments Ltd, the body charged with running the government's 80% stake in RBS, had wanted to approve the bank's bonus plans but was overruled by the U.K. Treasury, these people said. UKFI was set up after RBS's 2008 bailout as an independent group to manage the government's investment in the bank at "arms length." The spat highlights how state-controlled RBS continues to be buffeted by politicians attempting to diffuse public anger over high bonuses. The bank had sought to get shareholder approval for plans to pay bonuses of up to twice fixed pay for key staff before the government intervened...The U.K. Treasury said as RBS was still someway from returning to profitability, the increase in bonus cap couldn't be ratified. "RBS is heading in the right direction, but it has not yet completed its restructuring and remains a majority publicly-owned bank. So an increase to the bonus cap cannot be justified," a U.K. Treasury spokesman said in a statement. RBS reported a £9 billion net loss for 2013.

Any questions?

RBS Pay Plan Blocked by Government [WSJ]

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