RBS CEO decides to waive £1.6m bonus


Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) chief executive, Stephen Hester, has decided not to take his £1.6 million bonus, according to the BBC.

The decision by the 49-year-old comes just a week after Barclays chief executive John Varley and president Bob Diamond both agreed to sacrifice bonuses for the second year in a row, in light of the “intense public interest and concern” over bankers’ pay.

However, Barclays last week reported a 92% rise in full-year profits to £11.6 billion, compared with £6.07 billion in 2008, but RBS is set to report losses of several billion pounds.

Meanwhile, Lloyds Banking Group, which is 41% owned by the taxpayer, is expected to award £200 million in annual bonuses to its staff. Lloyds will also publish its results this week.

For some time now, bank bonuses have sparked public anger and have been the subject of heavy criticism since many believe their risks led to the recession.

Stephen Hester, who replaced Sir Fred Goodwin, was hired to run the bank following its Government bailout. His remuneration package is linked to targets based on RBS’ restructuring, rather than its profitability.

Last year RBS, which is now 84% owned by the taxpayer, reported a full 2008 year loss of £24.1 billion - the largest annual loss in UK corporate history.

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