THE ROYAL Bank of Scotland (RBS) was slapped with a £14.47m fine by the UK’s main banking watchdog yesterday over the quality of its mortgage advice.
The penalty relates to two reviews of sales undertaken in 2012 – the Finance Conduct Authority (FCA) said that only two of the 164 mortgage agreements reviewed met the required standard, and that loan advisers had given their personal views on the movement of interest rates during meetings with customers.
Ross McEwan, who has been in place as RBS chief executive for less than a year, described the charge as a legacy issue.
“When I joined the bank, we completely overhauled our processes, and took all our mortgage advisers off the front line for an extensive period of time to get the training required,” he added.
RBS would have been fined £20.68m, but the FCA reduced the penalty by 30 per cent because of an early agreement to settle.
“We made our concerns clear to the firms in November 2011 but it was almost a year later before the firms started to take proper steps,” said FCA director of enforcement Tracey McDermott.