RBOS sells global custody arm

THE ROYAL Bank of Scotland said yesterday that it has agreed the sale of its global custody business to Bank of New York for more than pounds 500m.

The deal makes Bank of New York the largest custodian in the world with $6 trillion of assets under administration.

RBOS, which significantly expanded the business in 1997 when it acquired the custody business of the investment bank SG Warburg and of fund management group Mercury Asset Management, is one of the largest providers of custody services in the UK. The business employs 1,500 staff, mainly in London and Edinburgh. It has over pounds 400bn of assets under administration including the pension fund assets of over half of the FTSE 100 companies.

Explaining the decision to withdraw from the business,Johnny Cameron, the managing director of corporate and institutional banking at RBOS, said: "We decided it would be better off as part of a group where this is a core business."