RBS Confirms £1.2bn Loss After PPI Hit
RBS has confirmed it made a loss before tax of £1.2bn in the third quarter, compared with a profit of £2bn for the same period last year.
As revealed by Sky's City Editor, the bank has set aside a further £400m for the mis-selling of payment protection insurance, meaning the scandal has cost it £1.7bn to date.
This provision took the total compensation bill for Britain's four largest lenders past the £10bn mark.
The 82% taxpayer-owned bank also said it had taken a further hit of £50m to cover costs relating to the summer's massive IT failure - which saw many RBS, NatWest and Ulster Bank customers locked out of their accounts.
It takes its bill for the meltdown to £175m.
The bank also expects to face "material fines" in relation to how Libor and other interest rates were set, it added.
RBS is under investigation by US and UK authorities over the rate-rigging scandal and is expected to be one of the next banks to settle after Barclays was fined £290m in June.
"The group expects to enter into negotiations to settle some of these investigations in the near term and believes the probable outcome is that it will incur financial penalties," RBS said.
It added that it had dismissed "a number of employees for misconduct" after investigations into rate setting.
But the group's core banking operations - if the mis-selling and IT charges are stripped out - performed well, with operating profit for the three months reaching £1bn.
A decline in charges on bad debt helped boost performance at the bank, which said its restructuring would be complete in the next 18 months.
As part of this plan, the number of employees was down by 9,900 from a year earlier, resulting in a 5% fall in staff costs compared to the previous quarter.
The bank described the collapse of the sale of 316 branches to Santander as "disappointing".
As a condition of RBS' state bailout, the European Union ordered it to offload the branches by the end of next year. RBS said it did not expect this to change and so had restarted efforts to sell them.
The group's chief executive, Stephen Hester, said it now needed to focus on improving its reputation.
"The extraordinary challenges which RBS faced following the financial crisis are being worked through successfully," he said in a statement.
"The five year restructuring plan is now in its later stages with important work still to do, including an emphasis on dealing with reputational issues now that the bank's safety and soundness has advanced so well."