Royal Bank Of Scotland

January 30, 2012 by staff 

Royal Bank Of Scotland, Royal Bank of Scotland Group Plc Chief Executive Officer Stephen Hester decided to waive his 963,000-pound ($1.5 million) bonus after the U.K.’s opposition Labour Party said it would ask Parliament to vote on the award.

Hester, 51, has been at the center of a storm since the announcement Jan. 27 that he would get a bonus for 2011. Britain’s biggest taxpayer-controlled bank has fallen 36 percent in the past year to about half what the government paid for its stake in the lender. Chairman Philip Hampton has waived his 1.4 million-pound stock award, and the government hopes the other board members also decide to forgo their bonuses, said a person familiar with ministers’ thinking.

Hester’s decision, announced late yesterday, should not be “just a one-off episode,” Labour leader Ed Miliband told reporters in Glasgow, Scotland, today. “If we don’t deal with this systematically, if we don’t deal with the issue of bankers’ bonuses in a proper way, then this sort of thing is going to reoccur.”

Prime Minister David Cameron, whose government holds 82 percent of the bank, was criticized for allowing Hester’s bonus, on top of his 1.2 million-pound salary, a week after he’d urged shareholders to hold down executive pay. The award comes at a time when unemployment is at a 17-year high, wages for many are being frozen and the economy stands on the brink of a second recession in less than three years.

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