Royal Bank of Scotland Group: Wikis

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The Royal Bank of Scotland Group plc
Type Public (LSE: RBS)
(84% Owned by United Kingdom Government)
Founded 1727
Headquarters Edinburgh, Scotland,
United Kingdom
Key people Philip Hampton, Chairman
Stephen Hester, CEO
Industry Financial services
Products Finance and insurance
Consumer Banking
Corporate Banking
Investment Banking
Global Wealth Management
Mortgage
Credit Cards
Revenue £33,836 million (2009)[1]
Operating income £(2,595) million (2009)[1]
Net income £(2,323) million (2009)[1]
Employees 170,000 (2008) [2]
Subsidiaries Royal Bank of Scotland
National Westminster Bank
Ulster Bank
Direct Line
Citizens Financial Group
ABN AMRO
Coutts & Co.
Adam and Company
Child & Co.
RBS Securities
Website www.rbs.com

The Royal Bank of Scotland Group (LSE: RBS) is a British state owned banking and insurance holding company in which HM Treasury holds an 84% controlling share (economic interest, actual voting rights will not rise above 75% in order to retain stock listing)[3]. This stake is held and managed through UK Financial Investments Limited. The group is based in Edinburgh, Scotland, and is the world's largest company by assets.[4]

The group controls the Royal Bank of Scotland Plc,[5] founded in 1727 by a Royal Charter of King George I, the National Westminster Bank, which can trace its lineage back to 1650, and Ulster Bank in Ireland.[6]

RBS Group is the largest banking group in Scotland, and at its earlier peak was the second largest in the UK and Europe (fifth in stock market value), and the fifth largest in the world by market capitalisation. According to Forbes Global 2000, it was the tenth largest company in the world.[7] Its shares have a primary listing on the London Stock Exchange. The registered head office of the group and the UK clearing bank are located at St Andrew Square, Edinburgh. In 2005, Queen Elizabeth II opened the bank's new head office building in Gogarburn, Edinburgh.

The RBS Group operates a wide variety of banking brands offering personal and business banking, private banking, insurance and corporate finance throughout its operations located in Europe, North America and Asia. In the UK and Republic of Ireland, the main subsidiary companies are: The Royal Bank of Scotland; National Westminster Bank; Ulster Bank; Drummonds and Coutts & Co. In the United States, it owns Citizens Financial Group, the 8th largest bank in the country. From 2004 to 2009 it was the second largest shareholder in the Bank of China, itself the world's fifth largest bank by market capitalization in February 2008.[8] Insurance companies include Churchill Insurance, Direct Line, Privilege, and NIG.

The group issues banknotes in Scotland and Northern Ireland and, as of 2008, Royal Bank of Scotland is the only bank in the UK still to print a £1 note.

Contents

History

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Takeover bids

During the late 1970s and early 1980s the Royal Bank was the subject of three separate takeover approaches. In 1979, Lloyds Bank, which had previously built up a 16.4% stake in the Royal Bank, made a takeover approach for the remaining shares it did not own. The offer was rejected by the board of management on the basis it was detrimental to the bank's operations. However when the Standard Chartered Bank, proposed a merger with the Royal Bank in 1980, the board of management responded favourably to the offer. Standard Chartered Bank was headquartered in London, although most of its operations were in the Far East, and the Royal Bank saw advantages in creating a truly international banking group. Approval was received from the Bank of England, and the two banks agreed a merger plan that would see the Standard Chartered acquire the Royal Bank and keep the UK operations based in Edinburgh. However the bid was scuppered by the Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation (HSBC) which tabled a rival offer. The bid by HSBC was not backed by the Bank of England, and was subsequently rejected by the Royal Bank’s board of management. However the British government referred both bids to the Monopolies and Mergers Commission; both were subsequently rejected as being against the public interest.[9]

The Bank did obtain an international partnership with Banco Santander Central Hispano of Spain, each bank taking a 5% stake in the other. However this arrangement ended in 2005, when Banco Santander Central Hispano acquired UK bank, Abbey National – and both banks sold their respective shareholdings.

International expansion

The first international office of the bank was opened in New York in 1960. Subsequent international banks were opened in Chicago, Los Angeles, Houston and Hong Kong. In 1988 the bank acquired Citizens Financial Group, a bank based in Rhode Island, United States. Since then, Citizens has acquired several other American banks, and in 2004 acquired Charter One Bank to become the 8th largest bank in the United States.

The Royal Bank also opened offices in Europe and now has subsidiaries in: Austria, Switzerland, France, Italy, Germany, Greece, Spain, Portugal, Denmark, Norway, Sweden and the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina. In the Asia-Pacific region, the bank has offices in: Australia, China, Hong Kong, India, Japan and Singapore.

National Westminster Bank

The late 1990s saw a new wave of consolidation in the financial services sector. In 1999, the Bank of Scotland launched a hostile takeover bid for English rival, NatWest. The Bank of Scotland intended to fund the deal by selling off many of the NatWest’s subsidiary companies, including Ulster Bank and Coutts. However, the Royal Bank subsequently tabled a counter-offer, sparking off the largest hostile takeover battle in UK corporate history. A key differentiation from the Bank of Scotland’s bid was the Royal Bank’s plan to retain all of NatWest’s subsidiaries. Although NatWest, one of the "Big 4" English clearing banks, was significantly larger than either Scottish bank, it had a recent history of poor financial performance and plans to merge with insurance company Legal & General were not well received, prompting a 26% fall in share price[10].

On 11 February 2000, the Royal Bank of Scotland was declared the winner in the takeover battle, becoming the second largest banking group in the UK after HSBC Holdings. NatWest and the Royal Bank of Scotland became subsidiaries of the holding company; The Royal Bank of Scotland Group. NatWest as a distinct banking brand was retained, although many back office functions of the bank were merged with the Royal Bank's leading to over 18,000 job losses throughout the UK.[11]

Further expansion

In 1967, RBS became the first Scottish bank to install an Automated Teller Machine, and by 1980 the service, known as Cashline had become the busiest ATM network in the world. Today it is now the largest privately owned ATM network in the UK, it is also a member of the LINK ATM network. In 1997, RBS was the first bank in the world to make its ATMs available to all cardholders. The word Cashline, in Scotland at least has become a generic term for an ATM.

In August 2005, the bank expanded into China, acquiring a 10% stake in the Bank of China for £1.7 billion [12].

A new international headquarters was built at Gogarburn on the outskirts of Edinburgh, and was opened by Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh in 2005. The St Andrew Square office still remains the official registered head office.

The bank was the 2005 recipient of the Wharton Infosys Business Transformation Award, an award given to enterprises and individuals who use information technology in a society-transforming way.

The Group is part of a consortium with Belgian bank Fortis and Spanish bank Banco Santander that acquired Dutch Bank ABN AMRO a on 10 October 2007. Rivals speculated that RBS had overpaid for the Dutch bank[13] although the bank pointed out that of the £49bn paid for ABN AMRO, RBS's share was only £10bn (equivalent to £167 per citizen of the UK) [14].

Coutts Bank's international businesses were renamed RBS Coutts on 1 January 2008.

2008-2009 financial crisis

After previous denials following press coverage,[14] on the 22 April 2008 RBS announced a rights issue which aimed to raise £12bn in new capital to offset a writedown of £5.9bn resulting from credit market positions and to shore up its reserves following the purchase of ABN AMRO. This was, at the time, the largest rights issue in British corporate history.[15] The bank also announced that it would review the possibility of divesting some of its subsidiaries to raise further funds, notably its insurance divisions Direct Line and Churchill.[16]. Churchill and Direct line currently remain as part of RBS Group.

On 13 October 2008, in a move aimed at recapitalising the bank, it was announced that the British Government would take a stake of up to 58% in the Group. The aim was to "make available new tier 1 capital to UK banks and building societies to strengthen their resources permitting them to restructure their finances, while maintaining their support for the real economy, through the recapitalisation scheme which has been made available to eligible institutions"[17]. A rights issue to existing shareholders having failed to secure more than minimal take-up, the government subsequently found itself owning more than 57% of the bank's equity share capital.

The Treasury would infuse £37bn ($64bn, €47bn, equivalent to £617 per citizen of the UK) of new capital into Royal Bank of Scotland Group Plc, Lloyds TSB and HBOS Plc, to avert financial sector collapse. The government stressed, however, that it was not "standard public ownership" and that the banks would return to private investors "at the right time."[18][19].

Chancellor of the Exchequer Alistair Darling stated UK taxpayers would benefit from the government's rescue plan, as it will have some control over RBS in exchange for £5bn in preference shares and underwriting the issuance of a further £15bn in ordinary shares. If shareholder take-up of the share issue was 0% then total government ownership in RBS would be 58% and if shareholder take-up was 100% then total government ownership in RBS would be 0%.[20]. In the event, less than 56 million new shares were taken up by investors, or 0.24pc of the total offered by RBS in October 2008.[21]

As a consequence of the mismanagement which necessitated this rescue the Chief Executive of the group Sir Fred Goodwin offered his resignation which was duly accepted. Chairman Sir Tom McKillop confirmed he would stand down from that role when his contract expires in March 2009. Goodwin was replaced by Stephen Hester, previously Chief Executive of British Land, who took over at the Royal Bank of Scotland in November, 2008.[22]

On the 19 January 2009 the British Government announced a further injection of funds into the UK banking system in an attempt to restart personal and business lending. This would involve the creation of a state-backed insurance scheme which would allow banks to insure against existing loans going into default, in an attempt to restore the banks' confidence.[23]

At the same time the government announced its' intention to convert the preference shares in RBS that it had acquired in October 2008 to ordinary shares. This would remove the 12% coupon payment (£600m p.a) on the shares but would increase the state's holding in the bank from 58% to 70%[24].

On the same day RBS released a trading statement in which it expected to post full-year trading losses (before writedowns) of between £7bn and £8bn. The group also announced writedowns on goodwills (primarily related to the takeover of Dutch bank ABN-AMRO) of around £20bn. The combined total of £28bn would be the biggest ever annual loss in UK corporate history (the actual figure was £24.1bn). As a result the group's share price fell over 66% in one day to 10.9p per share, from a 52-week high of 354p per share, itself a drop of 97%.[24] Some commentators called this the Blue Monday Crash.

Recent developments

In June 2008 RBS sold the subsidiary Angel Trains for £3.6bn[25] as part of a £10bn assets sale to raise cash.

RBS' contractual commitment to retain the 4.26% Bank of China (BoC) stake ended on 31 December 2008, and the shares were sold on 14 January 2009. Exchange rate fluctuations meant that RBS made no profit on the deal. The Scottish press suggested two reasons for the move: the need for a bank mainly owned by HM Treasury to focus scarce capital on British markets, and the growth possibility of RBS' own China operations [26][27]. However, Chinese sources noted that BoC had been unhappy with RBS' continued expansion of mainland operations rivalling BoC in the highly profitable wealth management sector.

In March 2009, RBS announced the closure of its tax avoidance department, which had helped it avoid £500m of tax by channelling billions of pounds through securitized assets in tax havens such as the Cayman Islands. The closure was partly due to a lack of funds to continue the measures, and partly due to the 70% taxpayer stake in the bank [28].

Also in March 2009, RBS revealed that its traders had been involved in the purchase and sale of sub-prime securities under the supervision of Sir Fred Goodwin.[29]

In September 2009, RBS and Natwest announced dramatic cuts in their overdraft fees. The unpaid item fee was reduced from £38 to £5 and the card misuse fee was reduced from £35 to £15. Meanwhile, the monthly maintenance charge for going overdrawn without consent is down from £28 to £20.[30] The cuts come at a time when the row over the legality of unauthorised borrowing reaches the House of Lords. The fees are estimated to earn current account providers about £2.6bn a year.[31] The Consumers' Association chief executive, Peter Vicary-Smith, said: "This is a step in the right direction and a victory for consumer pressure.[30]

The Group were reportedly planning to sell off their English and Welsh RBS branded branches and the Scottish branches of Natwest under the defunct Williams and Glyn's brand, last used in 1985, following conditions set by the European Union and the British Government regarding state support. In March 2010 the BBC reported that the Group had issued a sales memorandum for the business, which would include 318 branches and around £20bn of loans provided to small businesses and households, with bids expected in April.[32] The insurance division is also set to be put up for sale, or as a separate company through an initial public offering.[33] It had been reported in late October 2008 that the insurance company Swiss Re and venture-capital firm CVC Capital Partners were to purchase the Group's insurance division for a reported £6 billion,[34] however the bank refused to provide funding to the buyer which had been required within the deal.

In November 2009, RBS announced plans to cut 3,700 jobs in addition to 16,000 already planned, while the government increased its stake in the company from 70% to 84%.[35]

In December 2009, the RBS board revolted against the main shareholder, the British government. They threatened to resign unless they were permitted to pay bonuses of £1.5bn to staff in its investment arm.[36] The warning was very heavily criticised because it came in the wake of a £850bn bailout of the banking sector.

Branding

The RBS Group uses branding developed for the Bank on its merger with the National Commercial Bank of Scotland in 1969[37]. The Group's logo takes the form of an abstract symbol of four inward-pointing arrows known as the "Daisy Wheel" and is based on an arrangement of 36 piles of coins in a 6 by 6 square[37], representing the accumulation and concentration of wealth by the Group[37].

Operations

The Royal Bank of Scotland's office in Fleet Street, London- also home to Child & Co.

The RBS Group is split into 8 operating areas. Each operating area has several subsidiary businesses.

Retail Banking

This is the group’s main UK business, offering personal and business banking services. Services are operated under both the Royal Bank of Scotland and NatWest brand names. Key subsidiaries include:

Wealth Management

This is the group’s private bank division providing services to wealthy individuals:

Retail - Direct Channels

This division is responsible for the group’s credit card businesses in the UK and Europe; including internet and telephone based banking brands; and processing facilities for retailers. Key subsidiaries and brands include:

Corporate Markets

This division consists of UK Corporate Banking which provides financing, leasing services and transaction processing to corporate customers. The Global Banking and Markets division provides debt and risk management to corporate and institutional customers in markets around the world. Key subsidiaries include:

RBS Insurance

RBS Insurance is the second largest general insurance provider in the UK, as well as a growing presence in Spain, Italy, and Germany. Key brands include:

Churchill Insurance also underwrites: Lloyds TSB, Prudential, Pearl, and Alliance & Leicester Car Insurance brands
Direct Line also underwrites : Privilege (Privilege Direct, consumer side of the business)
  • Devitt Insurance
  • Green Flag
  • NIG
  • Finsure
  • Inter Group, with its brands Options and Medicover. The brand identifier Olly Options was created by Dirk Kelly.
  • Intermediary and Broker
  • Privilege
  • UKI Partnerships
UK Insurance Ltd. also underwrites : Tesco, Privilege Fleet, Egg, Mint, Mini, BMW, Peugeot, Suzuki, Vauxhall, MBNA, NatWest, RBS Royalties, Virgin Money, Ulster Bank, The One Account etc

Ulster Bank Group

Ulster Bank Group provides personal and business banking services in Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland under the Ulster Bank and First Active brands.

Citizens

The fifth largest banking group in the United States, headed by Ellen Alemany this division includes the Bank's businesses in North America, including Citizens Financial Group and Charter One Bank.

Manufacturing

This 'invisible' 8th division provides centralised back-office services for much of RBS Group, ranging from Cash/Coin Management, Call Centres, to Desktop Support and general IT for the more visible banking & insurance brands like Royal Bank, Direct Line, NatWest, etc.

Controversy

Subprime mortgage crisis

The group has been adversely affected by the Subprime mortgage crisis and the fair value adjustments of its assets. It has been supported by the UK Government, who now own a majority of its shares on the London stock exchange.

Media commentary and criticism

During Goodwin's tenure as CEO he attracted some criticism for lavish spending, including on the construction of a £350m headquarters in Edinburgh opened by the Queen in 2005[38] and $500m headquarters in the US begun in 2006[39], and the use of a Dassault Falcon 900 jet owned by leasing subsidiary Lombard for occasional corporate travel.[40] Revelations that RBS had spent £200m on celebrity endorsements also went down badly.[41]

In February 2009 RBS reported that while Sir Fred was at the helm it had posted a loss of £24.1bn, the biggest loss in UK corporate history.[42] His responsibility for the expansion of RBS, which led to the losses, has drawn widespread criticism. His image was not enhanced by the news that emerged in questioning by the Treasury Select Committee of the House of Commons on 10 February 2009, that Goodwin has no technical bank training, and has no formal banking qualifications.[43]

In January 2009 The Guardian's City editor Julia Finch identified him as one of twenty-five people who were at the heart of the financial meltdown.[44] Nick Cohen described Goodwin in The Guardian as "the characteristic villain of our day", who made £20m from RBS and left the taxpayer "with an unlimited liability for the cost of cleaning up the mess".[45] An online column by Daniel Gross labelled Goodwin "The World's Worst Banker",[39][46] a phrase echoed elsewhere in the media.[47][48] Gordon Prentice MP argued that his knighthood should be revoked as it is "wholly inappropriate and anomalous for someone to retain such a reward in these circumstances."[49]

Kraft takeover of Cadbury

In November 2009, RBS switched from backing long-standing UK client Cadbury plc to back a hostile takeover from a US company Kraft Foods[50] whilst being 84% owned by the UK Government.[51]

Links to the arms trade

In December 2008 the British anti-poverty charity War on Want released a report documenting the extent to which RBS and other UK commercial banks invest in, provide banking services for and make loans to arms companies. The charity writes in its report that RBS holds shares in the UK arms sector totally £36.4 million, and serves as principal banker to four major arms companies, including BAE Systems the UK's largest arms company. The report also details RBS's dealings with known producers of cluster munitions and depleted uranium.[52]

Fossil fuel financing

RBS is accused of sponsoring oil and coal mining by pressure groups like Friends of the Earth. Like many banks, RBS provides the financial means for companies to build coal-fired power stations and dig new coal mines at sites all over the world. RBS is helping to provide an estimated £8bn over the last two years to energy corporation E.ON, and other companies utilising coal [53].

Bank of China and Burma

The bank's former 10%[54] stake in Bank of China led to accusations of investing in the Government of Burma.[55] The Group defended its position by saying, "Bank of China is a highly respected international financial institution...it sets out its policies in its published accounts and we are happy with these policies and the way in which they are applied." [55]

Huntingdon Life Sciences

In 2000 and 2001, the bank was the target of threats of violence over its provision of banking facilities for the animal testing company Huntingdon Life Sciences. The action resulted in RBS withdrawing the company's overdraft facility, causing the company to obtain alternative funding on a tight deadline.[56][57]

Sakhalin II

On 17 January 2008 environmental groups wrote to Goodwin to urge him to exercise his leadership to resolve environmental problems associated with the ABN AMRO-financed Sakhalin II project (RBS, Fortis and Banco Santander acquired ABN AMRO in 2007).[58]

Corporate jet

In June 2004, RBS admitted that it owned a Dassault Falcon 900 jet worth £17.5m for the use of Goodwin and the board. Based in Paris for maintenance and tax purposes, the jet is also leased to the bank's clients via Lombard.[59] In light of the 2008/9 recapitalisation program, new CEO Hestor placed the jet up for sale in January 2009.[60]

Canadian tar-sands

RBS is accused of funding firms which extract oil from Canadian tar sands, a process that produces four times as much CO2 as conventional drilling, as well as having a devastating effect on the local environment and communities[61]. The Cree aboriginal group describe RBS as being complicit in 'the biggest environmental crime on the planet' [62].

Banknotes

The group's pound sterling banknote issues are in wide circulation in Scotland and Northern Ireland. In Scotland, Royal Bank of Scotland banknotes include the UK's last £1 note. Ulster Bank is one of four issuers of Northern Ireland banknotes, though, like other private sector banks, it does not issue notes in the Republic of Ireland, where the official currency is the euro.

See also

References

  1. ^ a b c Preliminary Results 2009
  2. ^ CFG Factsheet.
  3. ^ The Royal Bank of Scotland Group plc (RBS) - Announcement on the APS and State Aid Discussions
  4. ^ RBS et mon droit: HM deficits (FT Alphaville, accessed 20 January 2009)
  5. ^ The Scottish Gaelic name (Scottish Gaelic: Banca Rìoghail na h-Alba) is used by retail banking branches of the Royal Bank of Scotland in parts of Scotland, especially as signage and customer stationery.
  6. ^ Scotbanks.org - The Royal Bank of Scotland
  7. ^ DeCarlo, Scott (ed.) The World's 2,000 Largest Public Companies Forbes Magazine, Special Report, 29 March 2007
  8. ^ World's largest banks
  9. ^ Competition Commission - The Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation, Standard Chartered Bank Limited and The Royal Bank of Scotland Group Limited
  10. ^ BBC News | BUSINESS | NatWest takeover: a chronology
  11. ^ NatWest merger's mixed fortunes BBC News, 2000
  12. ^ BBC NEWS | Business | RBS leads $3.1bn China investment
  13. ^ Barclays boss: RBS overpaid for ABN AMRO | Business | The Observer
  14. ^ a b Does RBS’s acquisition of ABN AMRO really do what it says on the tin?
  15. ^ RBS okay for UK's biggest rights issue - CNN.com
  16. ^ BBC NEWS | Business | RBS sets out £12bn rights issue
  17. ^ HM Treasury (2008-10-13). "Treasury statement on financial support to the banking industry". Press release. http://www.hm-treasury.gov.uk/press_105_08.htm. Retrieved 2008-10-14. 
  18. ^ news.bbc.co.uk, Brown: We'll be rock of stability
  19. ^ bloomberg.com, Stocks Rebound After Government Bank Bailout; Lloyds Gains
  20. ^ guardian.co.uk, Darling: UK taxpayer will benefit from banks rescue
  21. ^ RBS now 58% owned by UK Government Telegraph, 28 November 2008
  22. ^ It is a good time for Hester to quit propety for RBS
  23. ^ UK banking plan faces criticism BBC News, 19 January 2009
  24. ^ a b RBS shares plunge on loss BBC News, 19 January 2009
  25. ^ Angel Trains' owners may pay price for costly leases
  26. ^ "RBS confirms sale of £1.6bn China stake". Edinburgh Evening News January (14). 2009. http://business.scotsman.com/bankinginsurance/RBS-confirms-sale-of-16bn.4873405.jp. 
  27. ^ Martin Flanagan (2009). "RBS sells Bank of China stake in a clear sign that retrenchment rules". The Scotsman January (14). http://business.scotsman.com/bankinginsurance/RBS-sells-Bank-of-China.4872360.jp. 
  28. ^ RBS avoided £500m of tax in global deals The Guardian, 13 March 2009
  29. ^ RBS traders hid toxic debt
  30. ^ a b Jones, Rupert. "Royal Bank of Scotland and NatWest cut overdraft charges". The Guardian. 7 Sept 2009
  31. ^ Osborne, Hilary. "Bank charges appeal reaches House of Lords". The Guardian 23 Jun 2009
  32. ^ "RBS begins Williams and Glyn's sale". BBC News. 4 March 2010. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/business/8550370.stm. Retrieved 6 March 2010. 
  33. ^ Government to set up bank chains BBC News: 31 October 2009
  34. ^ Swiss Re, CVC bidding for RBS Insurance
  35. ^ RBS axes 3,700 jobs as taxpayer stake hits 84%
  36. ^ RBS board could quit if government limits staff bonuses
  37. ^ a b c RBS.com | About Us| Our History | Exhibition Feature | Building the Brand
  38. ^ The Scotsman, 14 September 2005, Queen opens £350m bank HQ
  39. ^ a b Slate, 1 December 2008 Who's the World's Worst Banker?
  40. ^ The Times, 6 April 2004, Banking star brought down to earth over jet-set perk
  41. ^ Daily Mail, 15 February 2009, RBS slammed as 'reckless' after spending £200million on celebrity figureheads
  42. ^ The Guardian, 26 February 2009, RBS record losses raise prospect of 95% state ownership
  43. ^ "Exchiefs Of Royal Bank Of Scotland And HBOS Admitted To Having No Formal Banking Qualifications (from The Herald )". Theherald.co.uk. http://www.theherald.co.uk/news/news/display.var.2488353.0.Exchiefs_of_Royal_Bank_of_Scotland_and_HBOS_admitted_to_having_no_formal_banking_qualifications.php. Retrieved 2009-02-27. 
  44. ^ Julia Finch. "Twenty-five people at the heart of the meltdown ... | Business". The Guardian. http://www.guardian.co.uk/business/2009/jan/26/road-ruin-recession-individuals-economy. Retrieved 2009-02-27. 
  45. ^ Cohen, Nick (Sunday 18 January 2009). "It's not the poor the middle class really fear". guardian.co.uk. http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2009/jan/18/nick-cohen-middle-class. Retrieved 2009-01-20. 
  46. ^ "Economy: The World's Worst Banker | Newsweek Voices - Daniel Gross". Newsweek.com. 2008-12-18. http://www.newsweek.com/id/171688/page/1. Retrieved 2009-02-27. 
  47. ^ The Times, 20 January 2009, Hubris to nemesis: how Sir Fred Goodwin became the ‘world’s worst banker’
  48. ^ The Journal, 26 January 2009, RBS's Fred Goodwin: the world's worst banker?
  49. ^ "Ex-RBS chief 'should lose knighthood'". Politics.co.uk. http://www.politics.co.uk/news/economy-and-finance/ex-rbs-chief-should-lose-knighthood--$1267707.htm. Retrieved 2009-02-27. 
  50. ^ "RBS kept client Cadbury in the dark as it prepared to back Kraft's hostile bid". 22 November, 2009. http://www.guardian.co.uk/business/2009/nov/22/rbs-cadbury-kraft-hostile-bid. 
  51. ^ "Clegg attacks Brown over RBS funding for Cadbury bid". January 20, 2010. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk_politics/8470776.stm. 
  52. ^ War on Want, Banking on Bloodshed
  53. ^ Climate change: High street banks face consumer boycott over investment in coal projects
  54. ^ The bank initial stake of 10% was reduced to 4.26% when Bank of China issued H-shares on 1 June 2006.
  55. ^ a b Sunday Herald | RBS "profits from Burma links"
  56. ^ Animal Rights news in the UK | Animal testing lab faces ruin as bank cancels overdraft
  57. ^ "Inside the labs where lives hang heavy in the balance". The Observer. 2001-01-21. http://www.guardian.co.uk/Archive/Article/0,4273,4120748,00.html. Retrieved 2008-04-27. 
  58. ^ Environmental groups call on RBS
  59. ^ Revealed: Royal Bank's secret jet
  60. ^ Private jets on sale but prices are still sky high Observer, 1 February 2009
  61. ^ The tactics of these rogue climate elements must not succeed
  62. ^ Cree aboriginal group to join London climate camp protest over tar sands

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