FCA under pressure from select committee to publish leaked RBS report

RBS building

The Financial Conduct Authority is facing pressure from the Treasury select committee of MPs to publish the report in to Royal Bank of Scotland’s troubled business restructuring unit.

Nicky Morgan, the Conservative MP who chairs the powerful committee, has called on the FCA to publish the report, which was completed last year, after it was leaked to the BBC last week.

In a letter to Andrew Bailey, chief executive of the FCA, Morgan said the so-called skilled persons’ report into the activities of the now defunct global restructuring group should be published without delay.

It was a topic that had been raised by her predecessor, Andrew Tyrie, who did not stand at the June election. Morgan said: “The FCA told the committee in November 2016 that a full account of the findings from the skilled persons’ report would be published. Nearly a year later, and nearly four years since the report was commissioned, we are still waiting for answers.

“The report itself is now in the hands of an unknown number of third parties. The FCA now has no control over the timing or content of further public disclosures from it. The balance has tipped firmly in favour of full publication. I have written to Mr Bailey to urge him to secure the approval of RBS to do so, without delay.”

Allegations about the treatment of small businesses in the GRG unit first surfaced in 2013 when Lawrence Tomlinson, a businessman who was an adviser to the then business secretary, Vince Cable, compiled a dossier alleging the bank deliberately wrecked small businesses to make profits.

Last year, RBS said it would pay £400m in compensation to customers of the unit, which was closed in 2013.

The FCA, which commissioned the skilled persons’ report – paid for by RBS – said it had already initiated a leak inquiry. It said: “We have asked the other parties who had access to the report, namely RBS and Promontory, to do the same. If the Treasury select committee or the BBC have evidence that the document was leaked by the FCA, we encourage them to share that with us.”

The FCA said it would respond formally to Morgan’s letter.

Powered by Guardian.co.ukThis article was written by Jill Treanor, for theguardian.com on Thursday 7th September 2017 07.19 Europe/Londonguardian.co.uk © Guardian News and Media Limited 2010


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