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Coutts and Adam job cuts help fuel 52.3% profit jump

Coutts and Adam job cuts help fuel 52.3% profit jump

RBS-owned Coutts and Adam & Company saw profits grow 52.3% over 2017 as it cut back on staff. 

The adjusted operating expenses of both firms fell £66 million from 2016 to £445 million, largely due to an 11.8% reduction in front office headcount at the tail end of last year.

Peter Flavel (pictured), chief executive officer, Coutts told Wealth Manager: ‘We announced a voluntary redundancy register and that is the outcome of that voluntary redundancy exercise.

‘There are still some deferred exits with people who will not be leaving for several months but the exercise is over.’  

Royal Bank of Scotland total income from its two private banks increased by £21 million to £678 million.

‘The strength of our latest full-year results further evidences how our strategy of being ‘more than a bank’ is working - with deposits, lending and assets under management showing significant growth.'

He noted, in particular, the strong growth in Coutts’ investment assets under management that increased by £4.5 billion or 26% over the year.

Flavel also revealed that Coutts Invest, the online investment service offering a suite of five passive risk-rated portfolios launched last year, has now reached £100 million in asset under management.

He added: ‘I am equally as proud of the latest employee opinion survey’s results which are the best on record for Coutts–and rank ahead of the comparison peer group in 14 of the 15 measures.’

The UK PBB Collective Investment funds under RBS's personal & business banking division were transferred to Coutts in October 2017. The funds division had a total income of £11 million and £3.3 billion in assets under management in Q4 2017. Flavel said that the funds are closed to new investment as they are legacy products. 

Meanwhile, the wider RBS bank returned to profit for the first time in a decade.

The majority taxpayer-owned bank made an annual profit of £752 million compared to a £6.95 billion loss in 2016.

However, RBS will still face a potential fine from the US Department of Justice over the sale of financial products associated with risky mortgages—RBS set aside a total £3.2 billion for US court action with an extra £492 million last year.

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