RBS chief warns bank staff over Brexit '˜unknowns'

Royal Bank of Scotland chief executive Ross McEwan has issued a memo to staff, warning that the vote to leave the EU has created 'short, medium and long-term' economic uncertainties.
Ross McEwan said the EU vote has raised a 'range of unknowns'. Picture: Andrew Milligan/PA WireRoss McEwan said the EU vote has raised a 'range of unknowns'. Picture: Andrew Milligan/PA Wire
Ross McEwan said the EU vote has raised a 'range of unknowns'. Picture: Andrew Milligan/PA Wire

McEwan also moved to reassure employees that the state-backed lender is well placed to deal with the fallout.

He said: “We had planned extensively for both possible outcomes to ensure we were well placed to support our customers and colleagues.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

“The result of the vote carries with it a range of unknowns about the short, medium and long-term prospects for the UK and its economy. Added to this, we now have a period of political uncertainty.”

Read More
Pound continues to fall as economic fears deepen

Shares in RBS, which is 73 per cent owned by the taxpayer, have taken a pummelling since the vote – yesterday falling to their lowest level since the financial crisis, before rebounding today.

New Zealand-born McEwan also gave a nod to the bank’s international workforce, amid fears that Britain could lose access to the single market.

He said: “As someone born outside the UK, I see one of this country’s biggest strengths as its openness to the rest of the world, and the people of it. As a major employer and backer of the economy, we have a duty to ensure that we reflect that.

“The diversity of those who make up this bank at every level is key to our success. In uncertain times I want to ensure that everyone understands that.”

Meanwhile, it emerged today that Britain’s lenders have tapped the Bank of England for another £3.1 billion in extra cash to help bolster their balance sheets following the Brexit vote.

Lenders have now taken more than £9bn from the Bank so far this month after it launched three additional so-called funding auctions surrounding the referendum vote.

It is the first time the Bank has ever held more than one such auction in a month.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Bank governor Mark Carney pledged on Friday to pump at least £250bn into money markets if needed to prevent a credit squeeze.

But the result of the latest funding auction shows little sign of stress in the banking sector and is less than the £3.3bn taken by lenders at the start of the month.

Banks in the UK already have a combined £600bn in liquidity on their balance sheets, helping shield the sector from a repeat of the credit crunch seen at the height of the financial crisis.