City watchdog says it will not publish report on RBS scandal – yet

The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA)'s head Andrew Bailey today said it will not publish a report on the Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) restructuring group scandal by next week, as demanded by MP Nicky Morgan.

The FCA's board met today to discuss the report, but will decline to publish it until it has obtained the consent of some of the unnamed people mentioned in the report.

The FCA will provide a copy to the Treasury Select Committee by 16 February, if Morgan confirms she has requested this. However, it warns Morgan to "consider carefully the precedent" of publishing the report using parliamentary privilege.

Read more: MPs to investigate treatment of small businesses in wake of RBS GRG scandal

On Wednesday Morgan, the head of the Treasury Select Committee, said the report must either be published in full or handed over to the committee by 16 February, saying that the four-year wait since the review was commissioned is "unreasonable".

RBS bosses have indicated it will not fight the publication of the report on its now-defunct global restructuring group (GRG), which is accused of systematic abuse of small businesses referred to it for help in turning around after the financial crisis.

"The issue here now concerns persons other than RBS or Promontory," Bailey said in the letter to Morgan.

It is therefore "highly unlikely" the FCA will publish before 16 February. The FCA has not yet written to the individuals concerned, Bailey said.

Read more: RBS boss to MP: We didn't mislead parliament but you might have done

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