RBS to pay first divi in a decade

The Edinburgh-headquartered lender is putting some of its legacy issues to rest. Picture: Jane Barlow
The Edinburgh-headquartered lender is putting some of its legacy issues to rest. Picture: Jane Barlow
0
Have your say

Royal Bank of Scotland has seen bottom-line profits drop after being hit by a major settlement with US authorities.

But the Scots lender announced its first dividend in ten years as it starts to put some of its legacy issues to rest.

The high street bank, which is still around 62 per cent owned by the taxpayer, reported £888 million in attributable bottom-line profits for the half year to 30 June, down from £939m a year earlier.

It was hit by £801m in litigation and conduct costs over the period, helping to cover the $4.9 billion (£3.7bn) settlement reached with the US Department of Justice (DoJ) earlier this year over claims that it mis-sold mortgages in the run-up to the financial crisis.

Total income over the period dropped from £6.9bn to £6.7bn.

The settlement with the the DoJ has opened the door for a shareholder payout, with RBS announcing its first dividend in a decade.

The interim dividend will be 2p per share, though the timing of the payout is subject to the finalisation of its US settlement.

RBS chief executive Ross McEwan said: “We are pleased with the progress we’ve made in the first half of 2018 and see these as a good set of results in a more uncertain and highly-competitive environment.

“We are also pleased to announce an intention to pay our first dividend in 10 years, subject to a final settlement with the DoJ.

“Our sector is undergoing significant change and we are positioning ourselves well to compete.

“We still have a lot more to do to achieve our ambition of being the best bank for customers in the UK and Republic of Ireland.

“However, with our major legacy issues largely behind us, we are able to fully focus on closing this gap.”