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Sunday Papers: Free banking could end, says RBS boss

And Berkshire Hathaway’s fourth-quarter earnings rose 10% to nearly $5 billion as its insurance, rail and energy businesses generated major gains in the improving economy.

Sunday Papers: Free banking could end, says RBS boss

Top stories

  • The Sunday Telegraph: RBS chief Ross McEwan says the end of free-if-in-credit banking would lead to greater transparency about how banks funded themselves.
  • The Observer: Berkshire Hathaway said on Saturday that fourth-quarter earnings rose 10% to nearly $5 billion as its insurance, rail and energy businesses generated major gains in the improving economy.
  • The Sunday Telegraph: Investors push Standard Chartered on growth fears; concerns over future growth from Asian business, and a $1 billion write-off from struggling Korean division, have led investors to question bank's capital position.
  • The Sunday telegraph: Warren Buffet cuts holding in Tesco by 27.6% in last year, piling pressure on Britain's biggest grocer in the midst of its turnaround plan.
  • Mail on Sunday:, Britain’s first online pound shop, said demand has rocketed in its first few weeks of trading, setting the group up for sales of more than £5 million in its first year.
  • Mail on Sunday: Marco Pierre White – the chef, restaurateur and television personality - has signed a deal with hotel developer Sanguine Hospitality that will see 50 branded restaurants bearing his name rolled out across the UK in the next five years.

Business and economics

  • Mail on Sunday: Hopes that Royal Bank of Scotland would buy back a key part of the Government’s stake in the business this year have been dashed, shattering City expectations of an imminent £1.5 billion windfall for Chancellor George Osborne.
  • The Sunday Telegraph: Shadow business secretary Chuka Umunna applauds Waitrose after his fellow Labour MP criticised the grocer's coffee and newspaper offers to loyalty card holders.
  • Mail on Sunday: Hargreaves Lansdown introduces discounts on leading funds that will 'save typical investor £1,000 over ten years'.
  • Mail on Sunday: Tesco is facing the wrath of TV chef Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall and environmental pressure group Greenpeace after stocking a cut-price brand of tuna linked to a controversial fishing method that can kill sharks, rays and turtles.
  • Mail on Sunday: Independence for Scotland could put Scotch Whisky at risk of copycat products and threaten the success of one of Scotland’s biggest exports, the Treasury has warned.
  • The Sunday Telegraph: The John Lewis Partnership is set to reveal profits of £370 million this week after the business enjoyed one of the most successful Christmas trading periods in its history.

Share tips, comment and bids

  • Mail on Sunday (Midas share tip): Manx Telecom is a solid, mature business that should deliver rising profits and a juicy dividend. This is a great little stock for investors in search of income with a bit of growth, too.
  • The Sunday Telegraph (Questor share tip): William Hill looks a decent bet; if investors climb on board now, they could enjoy a lot of upside – buy.
  • The Sunday Telegraph (Questor share tip): With Hester at the helm, RSA is worth the risk; those willing to gamble on the insurer as a speculative recovery play should stand firm.
  • The Sunday Telegraph: Johnston Press hopes to raise £75 million in rights issue; Scotsman and Yorkshire Post publisher will issue new shares to investors at a discount as part of a debt refinancing package expected as soon as April.
  • The Sunday Telegraph: Electronics retailer Maplin up for sale; a sale to a larger player in the sector or a rival private equity firm thought most likely.
  • Mail on Sunday (Comment): Investors need to ‘take smart risk’ and British shares lead the way.
  • Mail on Sunday (Comment): Fear behind £11 billion facebook deal and dotcom buying frenzy.

7 comments so far. Why not have your say?


Mar 02, 2014 at 10:36

"Free Banking to end"-

Ho, Ho Ho!

When did it start ?

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Chris B (Slough UK)

Mar 02, 2014 at 11:57

We are already insulted by ultra low interest rates below inflation, how much more of an insult could there be?

It seems that banks have no respect for the people who entrust their money to them. The first bank to do it will lose most of their customers. Perhaps that's what they want?

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Mar 02, 2014 at 12:24

This is so typical, the only odd thing is why they didn't do it before.

Years and years ago the NatWest almost did its socks in South America.

In order to get money in they introduced all sorts of charges and raised the existing ones, 'We messed up so let's make the customers pay' attitude.

It really is time for the RBS to sell off the NatWest either whole or piecemeal and thus have the opportunity of paying back the Government and getting them off the share register.

Untrammelled by virtually insurmountable debt the Royal Bank of Scotland could then develop itself into a really fine Scottish bank, they could also keep a presence in England if they wanted.

It seems simple but is it possible, would there be enough assets to do this?

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Mar 02, 2014 at 13:02

Your delusions aren’t fooling the real people Mr McEwan. Banking isn’t free and never has been. Indeed we have been forced to acknowledge recently just how expensive it is.

Don’t push your luck Mr McEwan. Just because the “English” bankers (including those of the mis-named Royal Bank of Scotland) have our senior Westminster politicians’ dangly bits firmly in their grasp, don’t imagine that this guarantees security for either bankers or politicians. Have no doubts that the majority of your customers would be entirely happy to see both groups cozying up in gaol while we recover some of our money from your bloated and undeserved savings and pension funds.

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alan franklin

Mar 02, 2014 at 13:26

Why repeat stories? Doesn't anyone ever check this copy before it is set before us? Get a good sub-editor. Please! Or a better writer.....

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Mar 02, 2014 at 17:08

Free banking? And, free banking the reason banks took risks with other risky products? Do you think we are stupid? With rates of zero to 0.5%, and relending of these virtually free interest funds at 19% plus on credit card debt, there is no loss to the banks.

My view - if my bank wants to tell me that it does not make money from my trouble free deposits, it can do so, and I will gladly go elsewhere.

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Mar 02, 2014 at 17:11

If banks got their internal pricing right and charged the correct amount against the proprietary trading desks for the risk and the technology operational risks, and paid the correct rate to use free deposit money as capital, they would soon realise that capital market activity is marginally profitable, if at all. Then, they might start to work out where they truly make money. At that time, they will find all the current accounts are a good source of income from the spreads they can earn from us captive account holders.

But, for RBS, before any charges are attempted on C/A holders, how about really justifying how bonuses can be paid on an £8bn loss?

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