The Royal Bank of Scotland's chief executive, Stephen Hester, warned yesterday that the bank could face fines rivalling those Barclays was forced to pay in the wake of the rate-fixing scandal.
He said that the taxpayer-backed bank was being probed as part of the Financial Services Authority (FSA) investigation into the rigging of the Libor. Barclays lost three executives and faces a £290m fine.
"RBS is one of the banks tied-up in Libor. We'll have our day in that particular spotlight as well," he said in an interview with The Guardian. "Even though when all the Libor [fines] are out most of it is going to be around the wrongdoings of a handful of people at a number of banks. Those wrongdoings taint the whole industry beyond the handful of people and that makes it a huge problem."
The Libor admission followed a computer meltdown at RBS when up to 13 million customers could not access their accounts for up to a month. Mr Hester said the situation might have been avoided if more had been spent on upgrading existing computer systems rather than on developing new ones.
* HSBC could be forced to compensate victims of insurance mis-selling to the tune of more than £500m, it was reported last night.It was expected that the bank would say in its half-year results today that it had set aside £300m to settle payment protection insurance (PPI) claims, Sky News reported, plus £200m to recompense businesses mis-sold interest rate swaps following last month's industry-wide settlement with the FSA.