Comments come as MPs criticise ‘failed culture of box-ticking’ by City regulator over the collapse of the bank, forcing £45.5bn taxpayers’ bailout


Unite says ‘reckless folly of RBS management’ and lax regulation cost 30,000 jobs and four years of constant attacks on staff pay, conditions and pensions.

It follows the publication overnight of a report by the Treasury Select Committee of MPs which criticised a ‘failed culture of box-ticking’ by the City regulator over the collapse of the bank, after the 2007 takeover of its Dutch rival, ABN AMRO.

According to the committee, the Financial Services Authority ‘could and should’ have intervened.

Responding to the report, Unite says the RBS collapse contributed to one of the worst global recessions in living memory, with 30,000 UK jobs being lost at RBS alone and lifetime savings of staff in share schemes wiped out by the share price crash.

Unite assistant general secretary, Gail Cartmail said: “RBS staff have endured four years of stress and overwork and their reward has been four years of attacks on their jobs, pay, conditions and pensions.

“The message is simple: the collapse of our banking system can not be allowed to happen again.

“The government, the FSA, the Bank of England and the banks must act to transform a banking system that was so often ‘socially useless’ into one that works for the good of society rather than for the greed of the few.”

Critics say that four years after the £45.5bn recapitalisation of RBS, taxpayers are funding massive bonus pots for executives. In the RBS investment business, senior executives received a pot worth £390m for 2011 alone, according to Unite.

The Treasury Select Committee criticised ‘serious flaws in the culture and governance of the [banking] regulator’ and ‘a fundamental misunderstanding of its duty to account for its actions to the public and Parliament.’

With the FSA now being replaced by the Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA), MPs say the new City regulator must have the self-confidence to intervene, even if it might cause some destabilisation in the short-term.

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