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Motivating RBS's Hester

Robert Peston | 17:27 UK time, Tuesday, 8 March 2011

Stephen Hester and other senior RBS executives have today been awarded their allocations in a couple of incentive schemes.

Stephen Hester

Or to put it another way, they have been given an idea of how much wealthier they will become, if RBS returns to profit in a sustainable way and if RBS's share price responds positively.

In Hester's case, he could become quite a lot better off.

His maximum allocation under RBS's 2010 long term investment plan would be 10.1m shares - which would be his if he hits targets for profits, return to shareholders, risk reduction and strategy.

He will also receive 4.6m "share bank" shares in 2012 and 2013 in respect of his performance last year.

And he could receive a further 6m share bank shares next year depending on how he does this year.

So that's just under 21m shares that will be his, if he turns the bank around.

They are worth £9.1m at today's share price - and would be valued at many millions of pounds more, as and RBS's share price finally breaks above the 50p odd price which taxpayers paid for stock when rescuing the huge bank in 2008.

Which is not a bad reward for someone who arguably works for the public sector (RBS is 81% owned by taxpayers - and the Office of National Statistics includes RBS's liabilities on the public-sector balance sheet).

Comments

Page 1 of 2

  • Comment number 1.

    Well clearly it's crazy that he should get this much money, as we've discussed on here often enough we don't need the banking products that created the massive "profits" for all the banks and hence the mad mad pay packets.

    The question is what are we going to do about it, this could be the once in a century chance to break the control of government by Banks and big business.

    What do you think?

  • Comment number 2.

    He has a salary of £1,200,000 per year. Does he actually NEED a bonus on top of that?

    If he is unable to live on his salary, I am more than happy to advise him on how to cope.

    Presently, I am on Jobseekers Allowance of under £65 per week to cover all my outgoings having until recently been a Local Government employee.

    But never mind, as times are hard. And of course we are all in this together.

  • Comment number 3.

    Please Robbo could you leave it, you are becoming tedious.

    "not a bad reward for someone who arguably works for the public sector"? And what does that make you? How much are you paid Robert, for trotting out this doggerel, and whining on TV every night in your self-referential style? How much do you get on the speaking circuit? For the appearances in the mags? For the book which, for all I know, may already have been published detailing your "scoops" on Northern Rock, Halifax etc.

    Before I get the usual from your hordes of supporters, I am NOT a banker, and I have no sympathy for them at all. But this constant (it was Bob Diamond yesterday) whining and righteous indignation is truly tiresome.

  • Comment number 4.

    Shouldn't think the other public sector workers like the cops will be too chipper about this....


  • Comment number 5.

    bless, he probably needs it.....

  • Comment number 6.

    £7.7million for RBS Chief.

    We so adore your powers of under-estimation in your written word Robert Peston - yet are equally confused by your spoken word?

    Perhaps, we have tired of both? Why? The banks have played cat and mouse for so long ... it's difficult to differentiate?

  • Comment number 7.

    obscenity of the highest order ....... and the RBS is not even in 'the blue' yet!!! I hope these vultures will get pay cuts if they don't make the grade over the next 3 years...... and how about giving us all really meaningful increases...... we had to be satisfied with one of our pensions being increased by just £12 for the year last year - yes £12!!!! I bet he spends more than that on one coffee in some of the posh places he frequents...... it makes me sick!

  • Comment number 8.

    So....... after 30 years of a "Trickle Down" economy we now see a new "Syphon Back Up Economy".......

    You couldn't make it up if you tried......

  • Comment number 9.

    The pinnacle of greed in the 'rat race'!

  • Comment number 10.

    We are all missing something. For some reason the banks seem unable to present their case coherently and persuade at least some of the population on the merits of their actions.

    So far we have heard (i) banks will simply go abroad (ii) risk and reward (iii) regulation will have an adverse impact on banking efficency and (iv) breaking up banks will simply make banking more expensive for consumers.

    Why are none of these arguments sticking? As has happened several times in the past 250 years, banking may be about to undergo another fundamental change. What will banking look like in another 250 years in the year 2261. Defintely not this.

  • Comment number 11.

    Why be surprised?

    Way back in 2008 I wrote the following about some American bankers.
    (Bankers are the same world wide.) 23 Sept 2008.

    "As I write this I am watching Paulson and Bernanke live at the congressional hearings.
    They sound like schoolboys who's mates have been caught out.
    They know that their mates are going to be bailed out.
    They know there is no other option available.
    They are just taking on the chin since they know that they will soon be off camera and can then have a good laugh.
    They also know that their "solution" may not work.
    That is precisely why they will be having such a belly laugh.."


    And so it turns out that bankers can still do as they like.
    And have a real good belly laugh. Another one. And

  • Comment number 12.

    why are people constantly surprised by these stories.

    People that make it to the top in business have an unquenchable greed for money. It is a personality flaw, but one that enables them to make work their entire life. Normal people, i.e people who like to see friends and family just couldn't put the hours in that these people work. I'm not saying for one second they deserve the ludicrous money they earn becasue they don't create anything for that money. At least a Gates or a Branson have to create many jobs and product to earn their money.

    People that get to the top of the political ladder? Unquenchable greed for power. Again, what they are willing to do and the hours they are willing to put in to achieve that goal are unthinkable to most normal people. What normal person really wants to make the decisions that shape everyone elses lives. When you were at school, do you remember the bossy little busy body who wanted to be class president and had no friends. That is a politician in the making.

    These are the 2 types of people running the country and those of thus that appreciate a work life balance are never ever going to change that. We just have to hope that they don't mess up so badly that we can't recover from it.

  • Comment number 13.

    If Hester does indeed get the taxpayer back all its money (and he wasn't in charge when they blew it) he deserves some extra reward, doesn't he?

    So is it the principle of what's called performance related pay that people object to (ie you get more money if you succeed against your objectives) or just the amount? Personally I think it's just the total amount that's wrong. But what is it worth to the Uk economy if he succeeds?

    And WOTW will say (possibly rightly, who knows) that Hester will never succeed in achieving his goals and getting the government's money back. In which case he doesn't get his hands on the lucre. In which case poor old Steve has to make do with just his modest little salary.

  • Comment number 14.

    There is an excellent incentive scheme that I can recommend which applies to a number of industries and would work well with our so poorly paid bankers. It's quite easy to understand, sit down with your business owners/shareholders and agree a target for the current fiscal year. Once agreed both parties signe the agreement. It really is quite simple. Sorry I forgot the incentive scheme if you manage to get within 95% of the target you get to keep your job. Should you fail to achieve 70% of the target you get to look at the relevant pages in the Daily Telegraph on Thursday. The best thing is it doesn't cost all that much either.

  • Comment number 15.

    "...and the Office of National Statistics includes RBS's liabilities on the public-sector balance sheet)."

    That seems a little unusual, I would've thought that an asset *cough* like RBS could be kept off-balance sheet as it will clearly return to profit very soon with such a competent and experienced person at the helm.

    http://business.timesonline.co.uk/tol/business/article1290133.ece

    With such a mind for business, how can it possibly fail? I mean, look at the experience the bank is drawing on:

    http://www.rbs.com/about-rbs/g1/our-board.ashx

    They must be feeling the pinch as much as we are, some of them are having to hold down two or more jobs.

  • Comment number 16.

    WE NEED A NATIONAL MAXIMUM WAGE!

    All this talk and hand wringing is pointless unless we grasp at solutions!

  • Comment number 17.

    Great way to make a few bob, join a bankrupt bank, wait for the loses to be written off whilst the british tax payer keeps you in business and when the economic cycle straightens out the balance sheet, with of course a lot of redundancies, take a big bonus you did nothing to earn. How disgusting! especially whilst the government is fishing around for clawbacks from police pay.

  • Comment number 18.

    Hester should explain to the Government why thousands of workers have been, or are under the threat of being, made redundant, to enable back office work to be out-sourced to India. Also, if Indian workers can do the job just as well and cheaper than the current UK workforces why does he not apply this money saving initiative to himself and his board of directors.
    No bonus until we have received all our bailout money back.

  • Comment number 19.

    He has turned the bank around or will soon do so, but what of the tens of thousands of his employees and those whose 'laid down' their employment for the greater good of the bank? Things could only get better after the nationalisation and probably a pinned striped amoeba would not have done worse.

  • Comment number 20.

    Hester should explain to the Government why thousands of workers have been, or are under the threat of being, made redundant, to enable back office work to be out-sourced to India. Also, if Indian workers can do the job just as well and cheaper than the current UK workforces why does he not apply this money saving initiative to himself and his board of directors.

    ----------------

    You would be up in arms over bankers pay if they kept the same workers in the UK. Which way do you people actually want it, a cut down on inefficiencies or more spending from RBS?
    As for the snide comments about the public sector, still waiting for a full revelation of your own salary and bonuses, along with the money you get for publishing books and media appearances on this blog Robert. Oh wait, its only evil banks and capitalists who should have to reveal that, the Politburo is obviously working for the good of the people and hence would not like to confuse us with any more numbers.

  • Comment number 21.

    No doubt all those jealous whingers out there are simply brimming with ideas as to how to turn RBS in to a success story.

    I haven't got the faintest idea whether he is any good at his job or not, but he is clearly being offered the going rate for someone with his ability. If you want the best man for the job you have to pay appropriately. I couldn't care less if he is 'greedy' or not, as long as he turns the taxpayers share into a profit.

    Also I have no doubt that if any of you were offered a similar pay raise for whatever it is you do, you would climb off your moral high horse and straight into your massive yacht in Monaco. If you won 100m on the lottery how much would you give away and how much of it would be morally right to keep?

  • Comment number 22.

    11. At 18:40pm on 8th Mar 2011, prudeboy wrote:
    "....And so it turns out that bankers can still do as they like.
    And have a real good belly laugh. Another one. And..."

    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    Not always, everywhere. They laughed once too often in Cambodia a few decades ago, I gather...

  • Comment number 23.

    @16. At 18:55pm on 8th Mar 2011, John_from_Hendon wrote:
    "WE NEED A NATIONAL MAXIMUM WAGE!
    All this talk and hand wringing is pointless unless we grasp at solutions!"

    What should that maximum be and how have you come to determining it? Should taxation levels remain the same as they are currently or be adjusted for that new maximum wage? Is the maximum wage the total remuneration to an employee or does it exclude bonuses, shares etc? Presumably it wouldn't include that from "other sources" such as investments. Would the maximum wage be inclusive of other jobs, i.e. Mon-Fri 9-5 AND a weekend job earnings cannot total more than the national maximum wage or would the maximum wage be applied to just individual jobs, so potentially the same person could earn twice the maximum if they have two jobs? Would this maximum wage be applied to pensions?

  • Comment number 24.

    Another predictable Peston rant followed by the equally predictable moans from the fans of Peston.

    I wonder why all those who are so worried about the pay of CEO's just dont apply for the roles. Or perhaps they could apply for a Banking Licence and create their own bank.

    After all it is so simple. They coulod then lend money to people, who of course never "over-borrow" and who always pay back what they have borrowed. I forget how much personal debt the UK banks wrote off in 2010 was it nearly £10billion? that honest customers forgot to repay?

    I am not sure who lives in the fools paradise the CEO's or the whingers

  • Comment number 25.

    Really great to see that RBS Executives have been given realistic targets to achieve..how about a Target of £2.00 to give the RBS share holders a return on their investment of two years ago...RBS will never repay the good will of those that have lost their fortunes...RBS made the people on the coal face redundant ...no senior managers have suffered at all.

  • Comment number 26.

    #23. Stuart Wilson wrote:

    @16. John_from_Hendon wrote:
    "WE NEED A NATIONAL MAXIMUM WAGE!
    All this talk and hand wringing is pointless unless we grasp at solutions!"

    What should that maximum be and how have you come to determining it?
    "

    Maximum Wage = Max Income as declared for tax?

    Max Wage = 20 times Min Wage (David Cameron's level) i.e. Min = 12.5K Max 250k?

    Perhaps....

  • Comment number 27.

    Re 3 TheProphetofDoom...
    That's a nasty old commment.....did you get out of the wrong side of the bed?

    We keep hearing...
    "We must pay the right money to get the right people".....garbage.
    Obviously that applied to Fred Goodwin, and the heads of the Halifax, and Northern Rock etc.
    It's just the financial industry putting up the usual two fingers to the public, the government and its own retail employees, who are all on normal salaries.

  • Comment number 28.

    Tricky business Mr Peston? poacher and gamekeeper for too long, perhaps?

  • Comment number 29.

    nobody minds someone being fairly or even generously rewarded for their work. But what is happening here is neither fair nor generous - it is obscene. The government do not 'get it' and nor do the Bankers for they are too wrapped up in their own enrichment.

    I do not know how or when, but this is all going to blow up and it will not be pretty.

  • Comment number 30.

    A loss of 1 billion and he gets a massive bonus for failure. I think I'm a fully qualified executive.

  • Comment number 31.

    I would like to see what targets these people have to reach in order to gain a bonus as clearly they must be set at too low a level of difficulty.

    Even if they qualify for a bonus, bonuses in the order of millions are out of order given that some bonuses exceed their basic salary.

    Surely that bonus money ought to be paid to customers as interest or to shareholders as dividends as it is their money that banks are using to generate profits and it is their money which is at risk.

    It would be interesting if the government could set up a people's bank which can operate efficiently without the need to award high bonuses or to make high charges for services.

    Maybe the simple answer to the bonus issue is for the government to target the bank paying the highest bonuses and to state publicly that if that bank goes into difficulty it would not be bailed out by the government and people can lose money.When worried customers start withdrawing their money maybe the directors of the bank will start to rethink their bonus policy.After all a bank without customers cannot award bonuses or indeed pay employees.

  • Comment number 32.

    Whilst I agree this sort of remuneration package is very hard to swallow, it's not Hester and his ilk who are at fault personally. They are on contracts and whom amongst us with the necessary skillsets would not do just the same in such circumstances? I believe the blame is in the system which allows this kind of thing to happen. Whether it is down to board members and shareholders to sort out in the private sector (with government involvement in the case of bank rescues etc.) is not for us to decide. It's ok to whinge and moan, it's in our nature - even if we are doing it in our employers time and on their computers (here we go!) and we often feel better for doing so. BUT and its a big BUT - we can't actually do anything about it! If we could it would have been done by now - in the meantime... have another moan! I also feel the BBC and in particlar RP could offer us some respite from this daily drivel!

  • Comment number 33.

    Disgusting.

    Never mind - bigger things afoot.

    NSH - is this what you were referring to?
    http://www.infowars.com/british-tax-protesters-arrest-judge-in-act-of-lawful-rebellion/

    Day one.

  • Comment number 34.

    Wonder what his mom and dad think!

  • Comment number 35.

    Some bloggers seem to be whinging that RPs articles are becoming tedious......
    Did none of you notice that all of our banks nearly went bust, and we are going to be paying for it years?
    What would you like RP to write about.....knitting?....growing marigolds?
    Perhaps you should go and get yourself a copy of "Hello" magazine, or "Gardeners weekly".

  • Comment number 36.

    I have said it before and I will say it again. There is a CITY club of executives, non executives, lawyers, accountants, advisors and the politically connected who form an unofficial and loosley connected cartel. The objective is to promote self interest which ultimatley means; excessive salaries, bonuses and consulting come audit fees and the members support one another in this endeavour and very succesfully. Evidence Tony Blairs accumulation of £millions since leaving office. They are very successful and there are many more expamples. Until this "club" is broken up then such excesses as we see with RBS, LLoyds, Barclays et al will continue unchallenged.
    I dont believe these people have skills any better than many "normal" people yet there position in the club ensures they recieve rewards far in excess of anything which is justified based on their personal performance.
    I have always been a supporter of free enterprise but this is just an abuse of the privilaged position in which these people find themselves. It has to be stopped if we want to avoid the sort of reaction we are seeing in Libya, Egypt, China and elsewhere.

  • Comment number 37.

    All this fuss about bankers bonuses. Why don't the government tax the bonuses at 95% and then the tax payer will get a serious boost every year.

  • Comment number 38.

    "Which is not a bad reward for someone who arguably works for the public sector"

    2 words for you Robert: Jonathan Ross

    What was his salary, £18m?? Mind you in his own words he was worth '2000 journalists'.
    Maybe it is this that drives your obsession with other peoples pay?

  • Comment number 39.

    Well this common man is ‘glabber fasted’ at this news, so much so that I am getting my words A about T.

    I am surely out of step, a lost sole amongst the rest because I cannot believe what I am reading? Rewarding for failure in the hopes that he will succeed? What type of management is this? It is almost like the son of a dictator who is in charge of the military?

    OK common man look for the positives but were are they? Errrrrrm move to Spain at least you will have the sun!

    Well I’ll let my grandfather down and never vote again! I have now lost all faith in this pathetic government – WHEN POSSIBLE I AM OFF TO THE SUN!

  • Comment number 40.

    Absolutely obscene, but as we were told by the Government, we're all in this together!

    I'm off to plan how I'll spend my £7.7million.

  • Comment number 41.

    #36
    Without a revolution there's not much we can do. They have control. Legal profession/human rights law/legal aid definitely wants to be scrutinized.

  • Comment number 42.

    So, what can be done about it?

  • Comment number 43.

    Don't forget one and all, these are the sort who are paying too much tax and need the income tax rate cutting as soon as Cameron, Gideon et al can get away with it. Because these sort need even MORE INCENTIVES to do their job.

  • Comment number 44.

    Wow... and here we all are - thinking that government jobs are dead-end ones. In fairness though, leaders at that level expect to be rewarded in any industry and I do not see why banking should be any different.

    If Hester were working in some massive telco, we certainly wouldn't be cringing about the bonus he might receive if he were to achieve predefined goals. If competent leaders don't go to the banks because of reward issues, the UK may find itself in an even bigger economic mess than it is currently in.

    I say "pay the man!" - just make sure that he delivers enough value to the tax payers to warrant his reward.

  • Comment number 45.

    I thought I'd read that the Regulator's report into RBS had been delayed for at least one month; you know the financial regulator's report into Royal Bank of Scotland's transfer to taxpayer-controlled ownership.
    Lord Turner, Chairman of the Financial Services Authority (FSA) had previously written to Andrew Tyrie, Chairman of the Treasury select committee, telling him that the report would be ready by the END OF MARCH.
    But something happened and there was another delay by the regulator (I can't seem to find any reason for this delay). It's now due sometime IN APRIL.
    The FSA's had a 19-month investigation into RBS's collapse and that report was slow coming and then deemed not sufficiently rigourous.
    Personally, I am dismayed. Is Chancellor George Osborne also dismayed?
    Is there going to be a Regulator's Report, or will the report just keep being pushed the report back until all present politicians are retired or dead?
    Facts:
    1. RBS received a £20B taxpayer bailout in 2008,
    2. this was one year after it paid £47B for the Dutch bank ABN Amro at the height of the credit crisis.
    There's also this little thing that I don't understand: RBS launched a £12B "rights issue" months after indicating it no longer felt financially constrained. What the heck is this about and who authorized the "issue"?
    I really think we should get that Regulator's Report before we assess how much motivation Mr. Hester requires, don't you? In fact maybe we should go public, as in public inquiry. Why was the entire RBS board, including former chief executive Sir Fred Goodwin, changed, and what exactly is Chief Executive Stephen Hester streamlining?

  • Comment number 46.

    One of the "gurus" of the flotation of the then Halifax was Julian Richer, of "Richer Sounds", I understand. After the vote for demutualisation was won I called at the party thrown in celebration at his home, near York.

    The various guest with neckties at jaunty angles and ruffled hair seemed to me completely intoxicated, though more on their own self-satisfaction than anything else. Schoolboy antics, with middle-aged men bashing drumkits and convincing themselves they were Charlie Watts of twenty years back did not help, nor the fact that they'd apparently invited as many young female staff along on a strictly "no partners" basis as possible.

    It seemed to me that none of these could be trusted with the responsible handling of the public's savings, and my impressions turned out to be reasonably well-grounded, apparently.

  • Comment number 47.

    @35. Unless it's just unfortunate timing, I assume your comment includes me in that group. I just feel that as a State owned service, the BBC could do better!

    RP is putting a repeated and very one sided view in his blog. Furthermore he repeatedly refuses to comment on his own remuneration for his services when asked to do so on many occasions practice what you preach?.

    Its all we have heard day upon day now... his remit is Business Editor not (just) Bank Bonus Correspondent. Frankly its all starting to wear a bit thin - being reminded daily how much x is getting paid and then waiting for y to add his tuppenceworth ! Maybe until normal service is resumed then Gardner's Weekly it is!

  • Comment number 48.

    Robert,

    Why dont you ask Bob Diamond the following questions;

    Q. Who do you think was to blame for the crash
    A. Investment Bankers

    Q. What is your background.
    A. Investment Banker

    Enough said.

  • Comment number 49.

    Obscene when you consider the remuneration that the rest of us are obliged to accept.

    Something has got to be done.

    I keep hearing that these bonuses have to be paid because that's the going rate around the world.

    But surely its just a spiral, with Bankers across the globe competing to out-bonus each other, so the bonuses spiral upwards and become increasingly ridiculous...?

    If the UK Government can't enforce a change on their own, why can't the G20 do something about it...?

  • Comment number 50.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 51.

    Re 47 stevebielby....
    Yes, OK.
    But you don't have to read these articles...do you?
    RPs remuneration is irrelevant....he did not bust our banks.....he is a journalist.
    If you don't like it.....don't read it.
    P.S......Gardeners Weekly is excellent reading.

  • Comment number 52.

    47. At 20:42pm on 8th Mar 2011, steve bielby
    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
    Don't worry steve, the Easter holiday will be here soon, and with it the long BBC journo's break.

    It's filled the time between Christmas and then quite well for him.

  • Comment number 53.

    Put another zero on his pay packet; we don’t mind, and of course don’t forget to apply some fantasy bonus multiplier to his bonus too, that should give him a little more incentive, at least until his industry counterparts overtake him again in pursuit of the new going rate for holding the country to ransom. I wonder how many Police officer’s jobs we could save if we could just persuade the top 100 paid bankers to donate half of their salary to a ‘Save Our Police Fund’.

    With their numbers being cut by a possible 28 000, and a £4000 pay cut being handed to the lucky ones who remain, I predict a riot at some point, or at least a spike in the crime figures in the very near future.

    For the last week or so now we’ve been informed daily about the scale and obscenity of each of our bank bosses’ pay, insult upon insult, rubbing salt in our financial wounds, while our public services are being decimated, and we’re all just going to sit here and take.

    Time for a bloody ‘Middle Eastern’ style revolution HERE if you ask me, it’s the only way the masses; even here will ever feel anything like equality.

  • Comment number 54.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 55.

    Ever since the banking crisis this blog and others have provided a platform for a lot of adverse comment about the bonus culture in banks - and on the whole rightly so.
    Here's a suggestion. Rather than Robert and the rest of us keep on carping about individuals be they Diamond, Gulliver, Hester etc why doesn't the BBC commission a programme that charts the history of the current approach to the rewards packages in the financial services industry. I have lost touch with history on this one but I am reasonably certain that many banks have prospered very well in the past before the bonus culture took hold. We might learn some lessons and decide whether or not Mervyn King is right. I suspect that he is and we should look to shareholders acting in their own interests and the public at large to get the rewards packages in banks and other businesses that sit around the same table back onto a more reasonable basis.

  • Comment number 56.

    Worth every penny.
    RBS is turning around, but one of the reasons the share price is falling is that they are losing customers and profits galore by making banking with them as unpleasant as possible and thereby making these customers take their loans elsewhere.... so that only the moribund remain.

  • Comment number 57.

    Now correct me if I am incorrect here but wasn’t it part of project Merlin to limit the size of bonuses? If this is true just imagine how big they would have been?

    I have no connection with the banking industry so why am I embarrassed and ashamed at the last few banking revalations?

  • Comment number 58.

    33. At 20:05pm on 8th Mar 2011, writingsonthewall wrote:
    Disgusting.
    Never mind - bigger things afoot.
    NSH - is this what you were referring to?
    Day one.

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Have you actually read the whole article, or just the headline? I gave up when it began rambling about Illuminati. I presume it finished off by telling us all about albino monks...!

  • Comment number 59.

    Quite a few banker sycophant posters tonight with names I don't recognise from several years reading this blog, all saying exactly the same thing with surprisingly similar forms of words.

    Wonder why that would be?

    The reason Robert Peston is posting about banker pay is because the pay is being announced in the annual reports this week

    And we're 'whinging' because we're paying the debts of these publicly funded plutocratic imbeciles gambling debts for decades to come - you must have seen it it was in all the papers, even those dangerous pinko ones like the Daily Telegraph.

    So presumably the banker sycophants can add 'inability to read a calendar' to their many other skills such as 'inability to manage risk' and 'inability to read a balance sheet'

  • Comment number 60.

    33. At 20:05pm on 8th Mar 2011, writingsonthewall wrote:

    http://www.infowars.com/british-tax-protesters-arrest-judge-in-act-of-lawful-rebellion/

    Day one.
    ............
    Who said the British never make a fuss and lie down and take it? The pressure for change is building like a pressure cooker. Add in some serious inflation to reduce the prosperity of the middle classes to subsistence levels and the situation will explode. Values will be re-assessed, and greed will become unacceptable to the masses. We live in interesting times.

  • Comment number 61.

    58. At 21:33pm on 8th Mar 2011, north_view wrote:
    33. At 20:05pm on 8th Mar 2011, writingsonthewall wrote:
    Disgusting.
    Never mind - bigger things afoot.
    NSH - is this what you were referring to?
    Day one.

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Have you actually read the whole article, or just the headline? I gave up when it began rambling about Illuminati. I presume it finished off by telling us all about albino monks...!

    ..............
    Look at the overall picture. This is the beginning of an uprising against the rich elite capitalists being allowed to run the show and their sycophants that can be found in the so called house of commons that do their bidding by passing laws in their favour. The reason why change is more likely this time, is because the educated middle classes are going to be significantly effected this time, and will not be bought off with lies i.e. "it was all the fault of the last government".

  • Comment number 62.

    How about opening these highly rewarding positions up to an open bidding process. Suitable candidates can bid for the job - submitting their offer for deliverables and what price they will charge to deliver it. Penalty clauses apply if they miss targets. No different from a supplier bidding for a major contract. There needs to be some means of introducing competition and assessing the comparative value of different candidates.

  • Comment number 63.

    53. At 21:07pm on 8th Mar 2011, Sand_Castles wrote:

    Time for a bloody ‘Middle Eastern’ style revolution HERE if you ask me, it’s the only way the masses; even here will ever feel anything like equality.

    .......
    Its only a matter of time I reckon. The signs are there. Note the link above. But I dont expect it to be quite like the middle east, it will be an intelligent revolution led by the educated masses, using technology to assist.

  • Comment number 64.

    Sickening.

  • Comment number 65.


    What this tells you is that nothing has changed. The morality of bankers is as bad as it ever was and this Govt is just as stupid and incompetent as the previous one.

    Cameron told everyone the other day that we needed more enterprise and the Tories were natural entrepreneurs that supported start-ups. Well Heston has just walked away with enough to create probably 7 or 10 start-ups yet RBS itself would never fund a start-up.

    We need new banks and new bankers.

  • Comment number 66.

    I feel sure in years to come historians will write about these times, books and books of historical investigations.
    Librarians of this time, I have no doubt, will categorise them under fiction, because no one will believe their contents.
    No going rate of this magnitute is justified for ANY employee in this country, CEO's included, no matter what their field.
    Totally and completely unjustifiable, and no mater what anyone says it is not possible to justify the unjustifiable.
    I should have though with a basic salary of that size, keeping it next year would be enough motivation.
    It really does defy belief, and certainly puts into context the positions held by the Govenor of the Bank of England and any prospective regulators. They have little chance of changing anything.
    More of the same until the next big implosion then, staggering!

  • Comment number 67.

    These banks are so complicated that we know that we cannot trust the accounting upon which bonuses are awarded. It is in all UK banks interests to overstate losses and understate profitability thus delaying performance improvement as long as majority of bonus is share based. IMHO having robbed us all once they are robbing us again. Surely it is not beyond the wit of the remuneration committees to set a cap on how much these shares can appreciate so a maximum payout is defined.

  • Comment number 68.

    Why can this topic NOT be found on the Have Your Say main page?

    Is someone afraid of finding out what the public think?

  • Comment number 69.

    Project Merlin's beard !

    On a day that other public service workers are facing pay cuts and on thursday Hutton will announce drastic cuts to public sector pensions this announcement is another example of snouts in the trough for publicly supported banks.

    Another day another bungle Dave.

  • Comment number 70.

    His bonus is the equivalent to the salary of at least 200 (yes two hundred.!) teachers assuming a teacher earns around £30K p.a.

    It can't be right this....surely he is worth at least 1000 teachers....after all in Wall Street, there are people whose bonuses far exceed even the equivalant of 10,000 teachers...I've even heard that one of the biggest bonuses in Wall Street far exceeded the equivalent to 50,000 teachers at least....
    Maybe we should have a bonus structure which gives teacher number equivalent...
    Then this would show how unfair our system is compared to that of Wall Street...

    It's just not fair that in Wall Street bonuses are far greater than The City...

    Something ought to be done about this...

    What do you think Mr. Cameron...you poor soul, as your teacher number equivalent is only about 10...Perhaps you get by only because of private income.?...Why don't you not get a job in the City....And this also applies to your jolly good friends...

    It's nae fair is it.??

    The poor souls at RBS are obviously underpaid
    See/ Listen to this link…

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tkstrexj3ds

    Good story....

    A banker, a Daily Mail reader and a benefit claimant are sitting at a
    table sharing 12 biscuits. The banker takes 11 and says to the Daily
    Mail reader, 'Watch out for the benefit claimant he wants your biscuit'







  • Comment number 71.

    I work for the same bank. While he gets 7.7 million for continuing to wreck the bank and continue to make losses when he has all the power, I work equally hard all the the time trying to help customers on the ground and haven't had a penny added to my salary for the last 2 years. The salary which is just about 15000 per annum. I PROMISE THE 83% UK TAXPAYER SHAREHOLDERS TO DO A BETTER JOB FOR JUST 500 TIMES LESS SALARY!

  • Comment number 72.

    59. At 21:36pm on 8th Mar 2011, FauxGeordie wrote:

    Quite a few banker sycophant posters tonight with names I don't recognise from several years reading this blog, all saying exactly the same thing with surprisingly similar forms of words.

    Wonder why that would be?..

    >>> FG I suggest that it’s just as I was alluding to last night RE: Diamond geezer Bobby D and his Bonus Bonanza. See below examples of the various types of ‘think tanks’/ Lobby Groups/ Policy Wonks out there in the UK and USA who are funded to ‘promote’, ‘rationalise’ and ‘normalise’ the disgusting greed and obscene behaviours exhibited by these insane financiers: -

    The Adam Smith Institute
    The Brookings Institution
    Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA)
    Centre for Policy Studies (CPS)
    The Milton Friedman Appreciation Society – Otherwise known as the Chicago School of Economics…
    The Ayn Rand Institute
    American Enterprise Institute
    The Heritage Foundation
    The British Bankers Association

    I strongly suggest that at least some of those sycophantic posts you noticed could highly likely be either coming direct from such warped sources as the above or are, at the very least, being heavily influencing those who’ve posted in such ways…

    This is part of the reason these bank CEO’s want such ludicrous size incomes as they can then pay political parties to back their ideas and also pay loadsamoney for think tanks to prepare ‘research’ to back up what ever it is they want to do. They are prepared to whatever it takes to maintain the status quo in their favour.

    Also see below: -
    To be effective, think tanks insert themselves into the networks of people who are influential in particular areas of policy. They organise conferences, seminars and workshops, publish books, briefing papers, journals and media releases for policy-makers, journalists and people able to sway the policy makers. They liase with bureaucrats, consultants, interest groups, lobbyists and others. They seek to provide advice directly to government officials and to government agencies and committees, through consultancies or through testimony at hearings. Ultimately think tank employees become policy-makers themselves, having established their credentials as a vital part of the relevant policy/issue network.
    In their efforts to influence and become part of the policy-making process think tanks have more in common with interest groups or pressure groups than academic institutions. Nevertheless employees of think tanks are treated by the media as independent experts and, as such, are often preferred to representatives from universities or interest groups as a source of expert opinion.

  • Comment number 73.

    Don't know why so many people are surprised. Bleating about it makes no difference as no-one who is in a position to do anything about this wants to take any action because they are all in the same club. Politicians of the major parties, bankers, civil servants and others have a vested interest in keeping the status quo.

  • Comment number 74.

    Prophet of Doom, I think your handle says it all. Whilst these obscenities continue, I want Robert to shout long and loud. Maybe we need a touch of middle eastern activity in this country to make our leaders (actually they should be our servants) sit up and take notice. The general populace are extremely fed up with the mess that bankers and governments have got us into. In any other industry, the miscreants would have been long gone or even possibly locked up for fraud. In banking the creators of the problems reap the rewards! You could'n't make it up.

  • Comment number 75.

    Surely by now it must be obvious to all that it’s the banks that are running the country… not the politicians, the proof is there - right now in front of everyone’s eyes.

    A dangerous path it is…

    Democracy itself is now under threat… dangerous times lie ahead for all as we slip seriously deeper into a breach of what has historically become known as consensus politics.

    What surprised me most is that the most senior politicians of all parties, CEO’s of the banks but most importantly the media, just cant see where all this is leading. The fire alarm went off three years ago! We are all still standing in the burning building.

    The average Englishman/Woman is pretty tolerant, you can kick them a few times, but one kick too many and the country will descend into a dark age the likes of which have never before been seen.

    How can it be that a bank owned by the people (81%) supposedly acting for and on behalf of the people can make such an enormous political gaff? can they not read, listen or think, who is advising them?

    Well the answer to that in the words of that old Jedi master… a path to the dark side it is.

    If only this wasn’t a joke!

  • Comment number 76.

    Peston's obsession with CEO bonuses in the financial sector worries me. You would think he had a chip on his shoulder from watching Jonathan Ross get 18m+ while he was "working"(read that as writing blogs with no real analysis and much populist opinion) hard and "fighting"(all from the comforts of the BBC office) for the common man. Maybe Peston will do a post on what Steve Jobs and Lakshmi Mittal get paid as well, you know just so WOTW can call everyone else "sheeple" and make another hyperbolic comparison of a few iPhone swinging students damaging public property to air strikes on civilians in the Middle East(all on an evil capitalist funded internet connection of course), all the while telling us "sycophants" how the "revolution" is coming.

  • Comment number 77.

    Hester seems to be doing a decent job in turning RBS around, I assume most shareholders realise that he is worthy of a sizeable pay packet, giving how few people could actually do his job.

    On the other hand there are millions who could do Mr Peston's job, and a good deal better I should imagine. One article a day and its the same old story, bashing the bankers, I'm stunned that my licence fee is spent on something so pointless.

    Some better analysis is much needed from Mr Peston, to justify what he is being paid.

  • Comment number 78.

    3. At 18:04pm on 8th Mar 2011, TheProphetofDoom wrote:
    Please Robbo could you leave it, you are becoming tedious.

    "not a bad reward for someone who arguably works for the public sector"? And what does that make you? How much are you paid Robert, for trotting out this doggerel, and whining on TV every night in your self-referential style? How much do you get on the speaking circuit? For the appearances in the mags? For the book which, for all I know, may already have been published detailing your "scoops" on Northern Rock, Halifax etc.

    Before I get the usual from your hordes of supporters, I am NOT a banker, and I have no sympathy for them at all. But this constant (it was Bob Diamond yesterday) whining and righteous indignation is truly tiresome.

    --------------------------------------

    You're entitled to your opinion, but as far as I'm concerned we need voices like Robert's speaking out against what is a genuine obscenity. The fact of the matter is that Robert is remarkably restrained in his comments. That the head of a bank that LOST enormous quantities of money is receiving as much in bonus as an average worker would earn in half a millennium displays the causes of the failure of business in this country more graphically than a hundred bar-charts - we insist on rewarding failure. And that's before we take into account the grotesqueness of this public employee being rewarded so handsomely for failure while doctors, nurses, policemen, teachers and social workers will be facing pay freezes or cuts as a consequence of the failure of people like Mr Hester.

  • Comment number 79.

    Hope you are not asleep if you've read this far -
    Opinions are the majority BUT actions are currently NIL.
    How can anyone leap infront of an upward curve and claim "I was responsible - reward me" ? - Or is this too close to those who leap in front of the crowd and shout "follow me, and reward me "?
    This is outrageous ! If the recipients of these bonuses thought they might be strung up in piano wire they'd quickly refuse them !

  • Comment number 80.

    Surely if his bonus package is linked to share price he will just enable the bank to take bigger gambles to get there? Fine if he does, but if the gamble fails we could end up in the same position as before. I am at a loss also as to who voted for this package and on what basis did they think he warranted such riches, he is not exactly top of the tree in banking, what is so wrong is that the tax paid is so little by those banks that make billions in profits, not a dirty word but all in society must pay their fair share into society

  • Comment number 81.

    As I recall Madoff did very well out of the "profits" from his "Ponzi"!

    He however paid for it when it all went wrong!

    I have no problem if Diamond, Hester, oh, and Fred Goodwin are on similar packages:

    http://www.accountingweb.co.uk/blogs/jefflcbba/mad-lemming/i-am-ashamed

  • Comment number 82.

    Pigs with there snout in the trough again but this time the food in the trough has been paid for by the taxpayer, like we all have said numerous times before business as usual.Keep fleecing the general public with more complicated products, its all just a ploy to get our hard earned cash back in there pockets.

  • Comment number 83.

    The hysterically envious baying mob should have a quick look at this article and see if they recognise themselves:

    http://www.thedailymash.co.uk/news/business/people-still-unsure-how-banks-work-201103083606/

  • Comment number 84.

    FGS this is only the tip of the iceberg! Just to remind readers here that when any bank does well it is making profits from usury. Listen to the usual BS if you wish, the pay award and bonus may be a fraction of a percent of turnover for a 'very responsible' position. Erm, . . . more than the Prime Minister that costs us £120,000 who 'controls' (I wish) a GDP of £1.4 trillion? If Wayne Rooney etc gets a huge payout I don't really care - the suckers pay for that and I really do hope they enjoy the game, they have a choice. I can do without football but try as I might I cannot function without money: This person, these banks are making profit from our every day use of money, nothing more nothing less. Claims of a 3% markup on monies borrowed at 0.5% but loaned at 16% - 29% is nothing but an accountancy scam in my opinion. Depending on your situation, you are fortunate if you get away with 29% when all charges are taken into consideration. Ponder on this: people are sold the idea that 70+% of petrol costs are taken in tax. Not a true representation: (fuel duty + VAT /initial costs) *100 is more like 175% taxation. This is trivial, look at what you spend, where you spend, who really gains, who passes on the costs of their own taxation to others that pay tax when they spend what they have earned, . . . then look at who really gains. 80-20 rule applies to most people's income :(

  • Comment number 85.

    Just obscene.....no real justification at all , Oh and fyi.
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    3. At 18:04pm on 8th Mar 2011, TheProphetofDoom wrote:
    Please Robbo could you leave it, you are becoming tedious.

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    everyone has an opinion, but if you dont like what your reading and consider certain views or opinions repetitive, dont subject yourself to reading it. SIMPLES. Stick to commenting on the Blog subject and not the Blogger. Sad.

  • Comment number 86.

    1. At 17:57pm on 8th Mar 2011, Cthru wrote:
    The question is what are we going to do about it, this could be the once in a century chance to break the control of government by Banks and big business.


    Now -there's- a dangerous question!

    So you're suggesting that we should all quit moaning and hoping the bankers will all develop buboes and other Black Death symptoms, and actually try to DO something?

    Certainly a -novel- idea.... Hmmmm...

    The government route is clearly worthless.

    Without knowing the figures (could they be found?) on consumer finance in the U.K., it seems to me that the most immediate thing any individual could do would be pretty simple: stop borrowing money from the banks. Then do what you can to stop trading with companies that prop up the banks. Try to get back to community banking and community trade. If a bank or business is "too big to fail," try to give your business to an organization that -isn't-.

  • Comment number 87.

    So this guy is going to get bonuses for applying what most of us would think of as common sense. Well I think that is better than previous bonus schemes which were based on being able to make the Emperor's New Clothes.

    In reality it is a bit like the boy (it's always a boy) who brings a football to school, appoints himself as ref and wants to take all the penalties and can then claim to be the top scorer. His 'friends' suport him in the hope that one day they will be allowed to take a penalty.

  • Comment number 88.

    When my business makes a loss I don’t get paid, no point in talking about a bonus no money, bank won't give me an overdraft for this.

    Can someone explain to me, in simple terms, how a loss equates to such large salaries and bonuses? Please excuse my ignorance; I don’t have the benefit of a university education to understand such economic wonders, but I am sure somebody hear can enlighten me.

  • Comment number 89.

    What is the difference between the way bankers collect money and the way dictators collect money?

    Bankers are more brazen.

  • Comment number 90.

    There are footballers, F1 drivers etc. who are making as much as Mr. Heston even if they don't win the Premiership, F1 title, etc. Where is the moral outrage about these people? Or is it only bankers who are being targeted? Mr. Heston was not responsible for RBS's decline and is doing a good job so far in reversing its fortunes so that our stake in RBS eventually turns a profit (which won't happen overnight). The real scandal here is not Mr. Heston's salary, much of which is performance related, but that the executives (across the whole international financial sector) who were responsible for the excessive risk-taking that brought down the global economy still walked away with their millions. Personally I agree with Warren Buffett's recent suggestion. If a financial institution has to go cap in hand for a public bailout then the executives and their spouses should be required to forfeit ALL of their personal assets. Maybe that might provide enough incentive for financial institutions not to play fast and loose with their clients' money.

  • Comment number 91.

    Being sickened by the size of these bonuses does nothing to diminish them. Robert, please help us understand where these profits come from. They seem to come from increasingly complex financial instruments, the buying and selling of which contributes little or nothing other than generating profits that justify bonuses. Is this true? To what extent have these instruments displaced the financing of homes and real businesses? Who buys them? Has the financial services industry become a closed world where they are just buying and selling among themselves and paying themselves exceedingly handsomely for it?

  • Comment number 92.

    Many of the "why-oh-why" mob seem to think that Hester is personally responsible for the RBS mess. Can I just remind them that he had absolutely nothing to do with RBS during the days of Fred the Shred and the ABN Amro fiasco. He was brought in by the Labour Party to fix it once it all went tots up, and to ensure that the taxpayers got their money back. Gordo, Balls and Alistair set the terms of his package. If Hester is getting a huge wedge (and I understand a huge chunk of it is deferred) then it must be because he is doing a great job in ensuring that our investment in RBS will be rewarding. But that is too complicated for the tabloid-esque and populist drivel preferred by Peston and his groupies.

  • Comment number 93.

    can someone explain whats wrong with this guy getting a nice bonus for getting the company out of the mud and back into a better position. If he manages it the you guys all get your tax money back and he gets a nice pat on the back.

    seeing as you all moan endlessly about the banks taking your money wouldnt you like to see some of it back........ and we all know that the only way to get the bankers to do anything is with a nice big checque as the proverbial "carrot on a stick" to dangle in front of their nose.

  • Comment number 94.

    U14688512 wrote:
    can someone explain whats wrong with this guy getting a nice bonus for getting the company out of the mud and back into a better position. If he manages it the you guys all get your tax money back and he gets a nice pat on the back.

    seeing as you all moan endlessly about the banks taking your money wouldnt you like to see some of it back........ and we all know that the only way to get the bankers to do anything is with a nice big checque as the proverbial "carrot on a stick" to dangle in front of their nose.

    ===========================================================

    Careful!! Two people, whose names are not known to the self-appointed moderator of the Board (item 59 above) have written comments which appear to be similar in tone. We will shortly be accused of sycophancy and being one-and-the-same.

  • Comment number 95.

    Why does Mr Peston only have one record?

  • Comment number 96.

    • 71. At 22:29pm on 8th Mar 2011, mr_rational wrote:
    I work for the same bank. While he gets 7.7 million for continuing to wreck the bank and continue to make losses when he has all the power, I work equally hard all the the time trying to help customers on the ground and haven't had a penny added to my salary for the last 2 years. The salary which is just about 15000 per annum. I PROMISE THE 83% UK TAXPAYER SHAREHOLDERS TO DO A BETTER JOB FOR JUST 500 TIMES LESS SALARY!
    XXXXX

    Then WHY! are you putting up with it?

    Why are you not moaning? (this is anonymous)

    Why are many like you coming on here and supporting it?

    Why?

  • Comment number 97.

    88. At 06:39am on 9th Mar 2011, Oldchap wrote:
    When my business makes a loss I don’t get paid....


    Really! So what do you live on? Past profits or future potential profits??

    I suspect that in common with Robert you fail to understand the Hester was not in charge at the time silly debacle concerning the ABN Ambro take over nor at the time of the rescue.

    PS if your business makes a loss - shouldn't you be sacked - as that seems to be the view of most posters about Bank Bosses that make losses

  • Comment number 98.

    The thing I really don't understand about these bank bosses like Heston is that being in that sort of position is such a wonderful opportunity to do so much good but they never do.

    I'd give my eye teeth to have that sort of influence and to be able to work with Govt and industry to help rebalance the economy, create new companies, invest in existing ones and fund new technologies. It would be incredibly satisfying and worthwhile and really change the way in which people view banks.

    Why don't adopt this attitude? Is it that they're just not very bright or lack real leadership qualities?

  • Comment number 99.

    94. At 08:40am on 9th Mar 2011, TheProphetofDoom wrote:
    U14688512 wrote: ..................

    ===========================================================

    Careful!! Two people, whose names are not known to the self-appointed moderator of the Board (item 59 above) have written comments which appear to be similar in tone. We will shortly be accused of sycophancy and being one-and-the-same.

    ==========================================================

    why does my name come up as that random number, it says to me that im still avalanche_invesmtents. But its still a fair question. Why are people complaining about the possibility of getting their tax money back??

  • Comment number 100.

    I'm an engineer by training, I spent a lot of time in education learning all kinds of stuff including maths to a very high level. I spent years (well up until a year or so ago) working away assuming that the economy worked in a particular way. There were economists who were wise and had studied the way that the economy works and there were financial institutions that employed frightfully intelligent people doing really clever stuff with money to make the world go round.

    So fast forward to the finanical crisis and I start to look at how economies and money really work and the truth is it's all a fantasy or at best opinion and it doesn't take much time looking with a critical eye to see that.

    When an engineer designs something or tests a hypothesis it has to really work in the real world, that's why engineers get really good at spotting the problems in a system. They have no capacity for tolerating concepts that are plainly flawed. And Capitalism in it's current form isn't just flawed it's a sham and obviously so in many ways.

    In the world of finance it's fine to "create" ways of making money and if you can convince enough people through persuasion or bullying then you have yourself a massive profit. The true genius of this is you only need a few years of creaming it in at the top to become independantly wealthy so when the whole fantasy collapses you're on your yacht in the Carribean or if you make the mistake of still being employed at the time as long as you're high enough you can negotiate yourself a severance package (if you don't think this is wrong then you really need to look at your moral standards....)

    THAT is why it's so important that bankers with huge amounts of responsibility shouldn't be paid so much money.

    What I don't understand are the people who come here and comment in favour of Capitalism and the banks in the way they're currently working, only someone who hadn't looked at the way banking, economics and the creation of money work could think the current system was anything other than aone big confidence trick.

    Equally those who come on here complaining that RP spends too much time talking about the banks and the people who run them can't understand the way that our economy and therefore country works. This is it, this is the most important issue in your world today, if you don't think it is then you haven't trully understood how things work.

    Finally the good news is that even though engineers aren't paid that much we will go on making sure that the bridges you drive over, planes you fly on, electrical equipment you use does what you need it to do and doesn't kill you. Most of us do it because we know it's the right thing to do and that's why we aren't bankers (to the people who say well just go and get a job as a banker yourself and make lots of money rather than complan about others getting rich).

    I thank you.....

 

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