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RBS investment head steps down ahead of Libor fine

RBS Royal Bank of Scotland 440

The head of Royal Bank of Scotland’s investment banking arm John Hourican has stepped down ahead of the bank’s expected fine over its role in the Libor-rigging scandal.

Chief executive of markets and international banking Hourican has reportedly given up a bonus pot worth £4m and will leave the bank with his minimum entitlement – a year’s basic salary of £700,000.

Reports state Hourican, who has spent the last 17 years at the bank and led its investment arm since 2008, has been asked to leave due to the RBS’ involvement in the rate-rigging scandal, although there is no suggestion he knew traders were manipulating the benchmark rate.

The bank is expected to be fined between £400m and £500m by the FSA, the US Commodity Futures Trading Commission and the US Department of Justice later today over accusations it manipulated Libor between 2005 and 2010.

In a statement to the London Stock Exchange this morning, the bank says: “RBS confirms that it is in late-stage settlement discussion with these authorities. Although the settlements remain to be agreed, RBS expects they will include the payout of significant penalties as well as certain other sanctions.”

In June, Barclays was fined £290m by UK and US regulators for its role in the scandal, while UBS was fined £940m by UK, US and Swiss regulators in December.

The Financial Times reports business secretary Vince Cable plans to revive a plan to return the 82 per cent taxpayer-owned bank to the private sector by distributing free shares to the public.

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