Years On, Different Scandal, Same Problems

The numbers are once again staggering, the arrogance breathtaking. Yes, it’s another week, another banking scandal. Channel 4 News’ economics editor, Paul Mason, expressed what many felt when he went into something of a rage while reporting on the latest banking scandal from outside the offices of RBS. Mason later explained that the clip that was aired was filmed after he had had time to calm down, so exasperated was he that so little had changed in the last […]

Bankers Escape Justice

Even after PPI, forex and the financial crisis, many of the directors who presided over scandal remain in public life.
There was a time when bank bosses took at face value Ogden Nash’s satirical poem Bankers Are Just Like Anybody Else, Except Richer. Not any more. These days most bank executives realise they are different in that their actions can blow up the global economy, bring nations to their knees and impoverish millions.
City watchdogs say they also grasp that global […]

Whistleblower Royal Bank of Scotland escapes Libor fine

Royal Bank of Scotland has escaped €115m of fines for alerting the European commission’s competition watchdog to two attempts to fix the prices of key interest rates.
RBS, which is 81%-owned by the taxpaer, was fined £390m last year for manipulating Libor by regulators in the US and the UK. It was given immunity from one €110m fine after telling the commission it had tried to influence Swiss franc interest rates with JP Morgan. The Wall Street bank was fined […]

Banker Pleads Guilty Over Libor Manipulation

A senior banker from a British bank has admitted conspiracy to defraud over the Libor manipulation.
The banker is the first person in Britain to plead guilty to the offence.  The person cannot be named for legal reasons.
The Serious Fraud Office (SFO) said in a statement: “A senior banker from a leading British bank pleaded guilty at Southwark Crown Court on 3 October 2014 to conspiracy to defraud in connection with manipulating Libor.
“This arises out of the Serious Fraud Office […]

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By |October 13th, 2014|All Banks, FCA, SFO|0 Comments

Lloyds and Barclays top bank complaints

New figures show two banks attracted over 56,000 new complaints in first half of this year.
Lloyds Banking Group is the banking group the Financial Ombudsman Service received most complaints about, according to its latest figures, while Barclays generated the highest percentage of complaints per customer.
Between January and June this year, over 30,000 people complained to the Ombudsman about the Lloyds group, which includes Lloyds Bank and Bank of Scotland. And nearly 27,000 people complained about Barclays.
The Ombudsman is where […]

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This years biggest Banking Bonuses

Foreign exchange traders are traditionally among those receiving the biggest bonuses, but an industry-wide rigging scandal and slumps in market activity will mean this year being especially lean.
According to data from Emolument, the salary benchmarking site, bonuses at banks’ foreign exchange divisions are expected fall by 43pc this year.
A number of large banks are under investigation for foreign exchange rigging, in a scandal that it is believed could potentially outstrip Libor in terms of fines.
Additionally, historically dismal levels of […]

By |September 22nd, 2014|All Banks, Bank Bonuses, FCA|0 Comments

RBS faces legal action over GRG unit

The Royal Bank of Scotland could face legal action from hundreds of small business owners over its controversial Global Restructuring Group (GRG) division.
According to The Times, 800 companies have approached the RBS GRG Business Action Group to be considered for a group legal action.
The action group has appointed law firm Clyde & Co to review allegations that RBS GRG, which was meant to help firms facing collapse, actually forced viable companies out of business.
The Times said some companies claimed […]

Banks still committing the same old crimes

Mark Garnier, the Conservative MP for Wyre Forest in Worcestershire, has condemned banks for committing “the same crimes” following the financial crisis, and called for greater empowerment and accountability for frontline staff.
Discussing the £14.5m fine imposed on Royal Bank of Scotland and Natwest for “serious failings” in their advised mortgage business by the FCA, Treasury select committee member Mr Garnier said: “They are obviously moving on with this, but it’s truly shocking that banks are still committing the same […]

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Papering over the cracks

he decision by RBS to dissolve its Global Restructuring Group, an arm of the bank that stands accused of destroying viable UK businesses for profit, will do little to repair the damage caused to the bank’s beleaguered reputation. By Ian Fraser

As a damage limitation exercise, it ranks alongside Rupert Murdoch’s shock closure of disgraced tabloid the News of the World in 2011. 

The Royal Bank of Scotland has told staff that its Global Restructuring Group (GRG), which stands accused of […]

Tomlinson welcomes RBS Belated U-Turn to Treasury Committee

The former Government advisor who published a scathing report on the way RBS managed its relationships with some small businesses has welcomed the bank’s admission that its corporate turnaround division was used as “profit centre”.
Yorkshire entrepreneur Lawrence Tomlinson made headlines last year when he claimed that RBS had engineered businesses into default to move them into its Global Restructuring Group (GRG). Yesterday he said he was “pleased the truth has come to light”.
The GRG unit is meant to help […]

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RBS bankers in controversial GRG unit given £17m bonus

Taxpayer backed bank Royal Bank of Scotland has handed bonuses worth £17m to bankers in its restructuring division, despite an ongoing investigation by the City’s watchdog into its treatment of small businesses.

RBS’ global restructuring group (GRG) has been the focus of allegations by Lawrence Tomlinson, a Government adviser, that it forced viable small businesses to the brink so the bank could then buy up the properties and make a profit.

Another report by the former Deputy Governor of the Bank […]

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RBS Deputy CEO Says Bank Didn’t Push Firms Into Distress

“There can’t be all this smoke without some fire,” said Andrew Tyrie, Treasury Committee chairman at the hearing. “There have been widespread concerns about RBS’s lending practices.”
Royal Bank of Scotland Group Plc Deputy Chief Executive Officer Chris Sullivan denied the bank profits from small-business customers in financial distress.

The bank’s Global Restructuring Group tries to help turnaround companies and is “absolutely not a profit center,” Sullivan told parliamentarians at a Treasury Committee hearing in London today. “Absolutely, unequivocally, I’m saying […]

By |June 18th, 2014|FCA, RBS|0 Comments

Chancellor announces Fair and Effective Markets Review

A joint review by the Treasury, the Bank of England and the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) into the way wholesale financial markets operate.

The government is announcing further steps to raise standards of conduct in the financial system with a joint review by the Treasury, the Bank of England and the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) into the way wholesale financial markets operate. Strong and successful financial services that set the highest standards are an essential part of building a resilient […]

By |June 18th, 2014|All Banks, BoE, FCA|0 Comments

Mark Carney – Jailing bankers will not fix bad behaviour

Jailing bankers for market manipulation or clawing back pay and bonuses will not be enough to curb future misbehaviour or restore public trust in the financial system, the Governor of the Bank of England has said.

Despite a new crackdown on reckless bankers, Mark Carney said fundamental flaws in the industry could only be resolved by changing how markets operate.

“Merely prosecuting the guilty to the full extent of the law will not be sufficient to address the issues raised,” Mr […]

Sir Richard Lambert launches UK banking standards council

By Sharlene Goff, FT Retail Banking Correspondent
A new organisation charged with raising standards in the banking industry will rely on public naming and shaming of lenders that fall short as it attempts to clean up the sector after a series of misconduct scandals.
The UK’s seven largest lenders have agreed to report each year to the new Banking Standards Review Council.  The body will set standards for “culture, competence and customer outcomes” and publish an annual report detailing where banks […]

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    Tomlinson – Government influenced by lobbyists came as a real shock to me.

Tomlinson – Government influenced by lobbyists came as a real shock to me.

There is a “revolving door” between the civil service and the lobbying industry, Lawrence Tomlinson said.
Lobbyists for the banking industry have become “indispensable” to ministers because they fund programmes and the control information on which civil servants depend.
David Cameron once described lobbying as the “next big scandal waiting to happen”.
Mr Tomlinson made an estimated £550 million fortune investing in care homes, construction, IT and sports cars.

He spent a year as the Business Department’s “entrepreneur in residence”, advising Vince Cable, […]

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    Budget Report: ‘Access to finance remains a problem for SMEs’

Budget Report: ‘Access to finance remains a problem for SMEs’

In its report into the 2014 Budget, the Treasury Committee has reiterated the difficulties SMEs face when seeking finance – something which is preventing some businesses from reaching their full potential and hindering the economy.
Robert Wood, Chief UK Economist at Berenberg Bank and witness for the Committee, said: “very poor availability of finance over the past few years has almost certainly prevented some rapidly growing firms from expanding.”

It’s a view shared by fellow witness, the Confederation of British Industry […]

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RBS Mulling Over Legal Action Against Lawrence Tomlinson

Jon Pain, the head of regulatory affairs at RBS, said the claims by the adviser to the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills had done serious damage to the bank’s reputation since his 20-page report was published in November and legal action could not be ruled out.

Royal Bank of Scotland is considering legal action against the millionaire businessman behind a damning report that accused the taxpayer-backed lender of deliberately putting customers out of business for profit.  The bank may […]

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New crowdfunding rules: implications for small businesses

SMEs are increasingly looking at crowdfunding as a way of raising finance without dealing with bureaucratic banks and fickle investors. However, new rules by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), which came into force recently, regulate certain types of crowdfunding.
Crowdfunding involves raising finance by taking small investments, loans or donations from a large number of people. Depending on who you believe, the new FCA rules have either “taken the crowd out of crowdfunding” or “represent the right balance between the freedom […]

Number of fines imposed by City regulator drops by 40%

Number of fines imposed by City regulator drops by 40%
The number of fines given out by the main City regulator to senior executives in the financial services sector for misconduct or breach of rules has dropped by 40% in the past four years.
The figures will raise concerns that the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) is failing to crack down hard enough on bad practice despite all the concerns raised over Libor and other scandals.
Eighteen fines were handed down in 2013 to individuals in senior […]

By |April 22nd, 2014|All Banks, FCA|0 Comments