Royal Bank of Scotland may use its surplus capital to pay one-off dividend - the Times

FILE PHOTO: Royal Bank of Scotland signs are seen at a branch of the bank, in London, Britain December 1, 2017. REUTERS/Peter Nicholls/Files

(Reuters) - Royal Bank of Scotland Group Plc RBS.L could use up to 4 billion pounds ($5.2 billion) of surplus capital to pay a special one-off dividend to shareholders, the bank's Chairman Howard Davies told the Times in an interview on Wednesday.

Davies preferred to use the spare cash to buy RBS shares from the government but said the special dividend was an option if shareholders were in favour of it, the Times report said.

“If there are a lot of shareholders pressing for a special dividend, that is something we would consider,” the Times quoted Davies as saying.

A special dividend could be used to pay about 33 pence a share to investors, the Times said.

In August, RBS said it would pay an interim dividend of 2 pence per share in October, the first time since the bank was rescued with a 45.5 billion pound bailout in the 2008 financial crisis.

RBS did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

($1 = 0.7665 pounds)

Reporting by Philip George in Bengaluru; Editing by Lisa Shumaker