RBS 'recovered bank' claim by chief executive

RBS branch The restructuring of the company will include the loss of nearly 4,000 investment jobs

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Royal Bank of Scotland Chief Executive Stephen Hester has said it is near to being a "recovered bank".

Mr Hester said the company should have largely completed its restructuring by 2013.

But, speaking at a banking and insurance conference in London, he said wider economic recovery was needed before the government could reduce its 80% stake.

He also warned that "important execution challenges" remain.

The widespread overhaul at the bank has included trimming the size of its investment banking arm, selling non-core businesses and focusing on high street services in the UK.

The shake-up at its investment banking division will reportedly lead to 3,800 job cuts by the end of 2013 - 300 more than previously anticipated.

Mr Hester said: "RBS is nearing the point of becoming a recovered bank and well on the way to being a good bank.

"I hope by 2013 the restructuring phase should be largely complete and I hope that our ongoing businesses should be largely retooled and performing at least in line with competitors, with robust, enduring and valuable franchises at that point."

Mr Hester said financial recovery would provide a platform for "a period of significant outperformance" as demand for banking services improves in line with the economy.

He added: "I hope this will provide a platform for privatisation to take place in due course."

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