RBS shares sink on record loss

Royal Bank of Scotland unveiled the biggest loss in British corporate history on Monday,overshadowing a second government bailout for the sector and sending its shares reeling to a 23-year low.

Written by Reuters | London | Published: January 20, 2009 12:48 am

Royal Bank of Scotland unveiled the biggest loss in British corporate history on Monday,overshadowing a second government bailout for the sector and sending its shares reeling to a 23-year low.

RBS said it would report a 2008 loss of up to 28 billion pounds ($41 billion),driven largely by a goodwill impairment charge of 15 to 20 billion pounds related to its acquisition of parts of Dutch rival ABN AMRO in 2007.

Excluding goodwill impairment,the bank said in a statement it expects a full-year loss of 7 to 8 billion pounds.

The statement came as the UK government sought to counter a looming recession by unveiling a new rescue package for banks that will see its stake in RBS rise to nearly 70 per cent from 58 per cent.

The latest bailout failed to support shares in Lloyds Banking Group,however,as they made their debut on the London Stock Exchange.

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