LONDON Jan 17 Britain's financial regulator has
appointed two outside firms to review part-nationalised Royal
Bank of Scotland's treatment of struggling small
RBS, which is 82-percent owned by the government, has been
accused by government adviser Lawrence Tomlinson of pushing
struggling small firms into its Global Restructuring Group (GRG)
"turnaround" unit, so it could charge higher fees and interest,
and take control of their assets.
The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) said on Friday that
consultancy Promontory Financial Group and Mazars, an accounting
firm, will conduct the independent review which will be paid for
by the bank.
The review will consider allegations of poor practice set
out in two reports, and publish its findings in the third
"The review will also consider whether any poor practices
identified are widespread and systematic. If this is the case,
the second stage of the review will identify the root cause of
these issues and make recommendations to address any
shortcomings identified," the FCA said in a statement.
Jon Pain, head of conduct and regulatory affairs at RBS,
said that in addition to the FCA's review the bank has
commissioned lawfirm Clifford Chance to further investigate
loans to business customers.
"Any customer with concerns about their experience with GRG
can contact Clifford Chance to have their case examined," Pain
The FCA said that while commercial lending is not a
regulated activity, if the findings reveal issues which come
within the FCA's remit it will consider further regulatory