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RBS paying pair of bankers 12m a year to jump ship

City A.M. Reporter
ROYAL Bank of Scotland (RBS) is understood to have spent more than &pound;12m hiring two bankers, in a move which comes as City watchdog the Financial Services Authority (FSA) published its new code on banker&rsquo;s pay yesterday.<br /><br />RBS, which is 70 per cent owned by the taxpayer, has poached Antonio Polverino, a star bond trader from Merrill Lynch, on what is thought to be a &pound;7m one-year package. <br /><br />Its new finance director, Bruce Van Saun, will also join from Bank of New York Mellon next month on a multimillion-pound salary.<br /><br />Van Saun was paid $9m (&pound;5.4m) in 2007, his last full year at the US bank, and is expected to be paid just as well in his new role.<br /><br />The packages are two of the most lucrative offered by RBS and are designed to attract the talent the bank says it needs to rebuild its business after it almost collapsed last October and had to be bailed out with &pound;20bn of taxpayers&rsquo; cash.<br /><br />RBS chief executive Stephen Hester, who could earn about &pound;10m in 2009 himself, said last week the bank has offered controversial guaranteed bonuses to a handful of recruits that it hopes will be &ldquo;rainmakers&rdquo; who will help to turn its fortunes around.<br /><br />RBS declined to comment on pay of either of the men.