Bloomberg News reports that the taxpayer-owned bank may take $5.6bn of charges for outstanding conduct and litigation issues this year, Andrew Coombs, an analyst at Citigroup with a sell rating on RBS, wrote in a note to clients on Friday. That may prompt the government to start selling its 78% stake at the end of 2015 at the earliest, Coombs wrote.
CEO Ross McEwan’s efforts to return the bank to profit by selling assets and cutting thousands of jobs have been hobbled by past misdemeanors. U.S. regulators have told RBS it could pay as much as $13bn if it loses a lawsuit over its handling of mortgage securities, although the ultimate value of the settlement may be much lower, according to Bloomberg Intelligence analyst Elliott Stein.
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