Bank 'moving forward' despite half-year loss
Royal Bank of Scotland preparing for ‘noisy year’, says McEwan
Royal Bank of Scotland reported a rise in second quarter profit after booking a £1.05 billion charge for the costs of restructuring and setting aside £459 million to deal with conduct and litigation issues.
The figures for the three months to the end of June were better than analysts expected, though chief executive Ross McEwan warned this “will continue to be a noisy year.”
He admitted the bank was facing some tough issues, not least legal action in the US, but the underlying business is now stronger and the bank was “moving forward on its plans”.
Delivering a £293 million second quarter profit, up 27% on last year, he said the bank was “no longer chasing global market share but focusing on the UK.” Over the half year, the bank recorded a loss of £153m but the latest figures suggest an upturn in its prospects.
Mr McEwan made no specific comment on the latest IT disruption but said: “We are determined to win back the trust of customers and to be the best bank in this country.”
The bank reported a 43% rise in mortgage lending.
Mr McEwan said he welcomed the government’s intention to start selling its stake in the bank. The improving outlook is likely to encourage the Treasury to make a move sooner rather than later.