Thomson Financial reports that, according to a recent article in Dutch daily newspaper Het Financieele Dagblad, bankers at ABN AMRO are worried that they may not get paid out some $1.11bn in 'loyalty' bonuses that apparently form part of a retention package agreed awhile back. The bankers are said to want the bonuses, which become due 3 years after the scheme was put in place, paid out as soon as possible given that most are moving to Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) following the recent ABN takeover led by the Scottish firm.
The Dutch newspaper quotes an unnamed ABN AMRO banker, who said that 'if we don't get the money, I expect a revolt'. The problem, it seems, is that ABN didn't accrue for the bonus payments, instead taking them as costs to be spread over four years. RBS, which is probably also worried that an immediate pay out will only result in many bankers upping sticks for rivals, is also thought to be concerned as it doesn't have a similar scheme in place for its own employees.
RBS told Reuters that it 'does not plan to negotiate via the media on important staff issues which will be dealt with through the appropriate channels and direct with our colleagues'. Het Financieele Dagblad says that an RBS spokesperson confirmed to them that the bank wasn't yet sure how to handle this situation, but did say that employee rights would be respected.
Attempts to obtain some more colour and clarification on this story have proved difficult. Unfortunately ABN AMRO's press office have not responded to our request for contact or comment. Is anybody still there ?