Royal Bank of Scotland Group PLC (NYSE:RBS) Loss Narrows In 2015

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Royal Bank of Scotland Group PLC (NYSE:RBS)

Royal Bank of Scotland Group PLC (NYSE:RBS) suffered a narrower loss in 2015 than the preceding year and its pretax profit failed to meet Street expectations. The bank has been reporting losses since the year 2008 and it had indicated that it would take a longer time to resume dividend payout to its shareholders than originally planned. The losses were due to the costs incurred for the past misconduct of the business. As a result, its shares were trading close to 8% down today.

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Dividends Deferred

At the height of the financial crisis, Royal Bank of Scotland was given a bailout package of $45.5 billion in 2008. Its CEO Ross McEwan has been facing pressures to bring the company pack to paying its dividend. He indicated that there were some outstanding issues like the possible settlement on mortgage-backed securities. Therefore, he said that it was more likely that the bank would not be able to resume its capital distributions as originally planned. That meant it will miss the target of the March quarter of next year and shareholders will continue to wait.

During a conference call, the CEO was cautious about timing. He pointed out that there were some big conduct charges that the Bank had to face apart from the mortgage-backed securities issue. He said that he was also looking forward to the day when the bank could put all the issues behind it.

Narrower Loss

Royal Bank of Scotland’s net loss narrowed to £1.98 billion in 2015 from the preceding year’s £3.47 billion. Its pre-tax profit, on an adjusted basis, dropped 28% to £4.41 billion. This was lower than analysts’ expectations of £4.45 billion.

The bank has reduced risk-weighted assets to £243 billion due to the disposal of its consumer bank in the United States. The bank also shed assets at its securities division as it could save costs of more than one billion pounds. The company is hopeful of saving £800 million in the current year.

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