Shares in NatWest are down three per cent this morning after the UK Government completed another sale of its majority stake in NatWest, crystalising losses for the taxpayer on the bailed out bank formerly known as RBS Group.
UK Government Investments, the vehicle managing HM Treasury’s investments, told the sharemarket this morning that a five per cent of total shares had been bought back by the bank for £1.1bn.
At 190p based on yesterday’s closing price, the sale is still well down on the price taxpayers paid per share when the UK Government bailed out NatWest in 2008 for 508p per share.
Shares are also below the 2018 sale price of 271p a share.
NatWest, formerly Royal Bank of Scotland, has long argued it is unrealistic to expect a profit on the bank’s rescue, which was needed to stabilise the UK’s financial system.
Shares in NatWest, now led by Alison Rose, have more than doubled from their 90p low last September, as confidence in the UK’s recovery from Covid-19 increased.
The bookrunners on the sale are Barclays, Citigroup , Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley. Rothschild & Co is acting as adviser to UKGI.
HM Treasury this morning said the government “continues to keep all options and timings under review for future sales”.