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Coutts staff angered at bonus cuts

by Elsa Buchanan on Mar 14, 2014 at 07:55

Coutts staff angered at bonus cuts

Staff at Coutts have reacted furiously after learning their bonuses have been slashed by 40% this year.

The 40% figure is much higher than the 15% fall in bonus payments at parent group RBS.

‘RBS has only cut its bonuses by 15%. And for reasons we don’t understand because Coutts is only one of two divisions that made an adequate return on equity, our bonus pool for Coutts as a whole has been cut by 40%,’ an internal source told Wealth Manager.

‘I don’t understand why Coutts is cutting them so much. I got a better rating this year than last year, and my bonus is down.’

The source said this has triggered a ‘high level of dissatisfaction’ because ‘everyone has been affected’.

‘We’ve been told there have been cuts across the board, across the products and services area, and the front office.’

The source said relationship managers and portfolio managers have also seen their payouts reduced.

RBS recorded a pre-tax loss of £8.2 billion in 2013, while RBS Wealth, which includes Coutts and Adam & Co, saw its operating profit fall 10% to £221 million. 

The source believes the cuts were because RBS is worried about losing key people in the businesses it is looking to sell.

‘That makes no sense, because it’s just as dangerous to be losing people at Coutts as it is to lose people in the businesses you’re selling.’

Coutts declined to comment.

7 comments so far. Why not have your say?

Small business owner

Mar 14, 2014 at 08:39

The word on the street is that Coutts is up for sale so no surprises here......

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Mar 14, 2014 at 09:01

The 'word on the street' in our neck of the woods re Coutts is "Relevance?".

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Ed Bowsher

Mar 14, 2014 at 13:53

Ok, it's a big cut, but maybe RBS has just realised that the Coutts bonuses have been too high historically. I don't have any hard evidence on that. Just speculating...

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Mar 14, 2014 at 21:21

Can anyone tell us anymore info. I gather a private banker gets about £50-100k but they get 30% extra as a flex type allowance for pension! perks etc? is it that thats been cut?

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Mar 14, 2014 at 22:10

Don't be fooled. Private Bankers at Coutts earn about £35k with 15% perks which includes their pension contributions. They are not well paid by any means.

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Guy Usabreak

Mar 15, 2014 at 10:19

I smile at articles like this.. What in reality are we speaking about.. Other than another ill informed comment on " banker's bonuses" .. So let's look at what this says.. "Coutts staff are angered" what percentage of the staff are angered would give credibility to the story... "An internal source" ... Ah there we have it.. Perhaps this headline could have been more accurately stated as a " malcontent" is angered.. Ah no story there ...malcontents are in a permanent angry state.. Move on is my advice to him/ her.. Shame on you citywire publishing this from information from a " malcontent "

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Mar 28, 2014 at 19:25

Coutts and Adam & Co have been in the shop window for around 2 years now and frankly it is only a matter of time before they are sold off. Both businesses have been streamlined and stripped out with most clients now in the mass affluent category so it is not likely that staff are going to be rewarded for simply retaining what they already have. That's just business as usual.

For those getting out and burning some shoe leather to win new and profitable business, bonus guarantees future performance and that's how it should be in the real private banking world. Guy is right.

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