July 31, 2013

RBS launches independent review into small business lending

The Royal Bank of Scotland has launched a review of how it makes its decisions on small and medium enterprise (SME) lending.

According to bbc.co.uk, a management consultancy called Oliver Wyman has been asked to help Sir Andrew Large, the former deputy governor for the Bank of England, to help RBS re-assess its lending processes.

Business loans given to companies fell by £1.6 billion during the first quarter of this year and businesses have complained they have found raising finance to support their growth difficult.

The review is being conducted so RBS can work out how to improve its support to SMEs and the recovery of the economy, whilst making sure they are performing safe lending practices.

RBS’s chief executive of UK corporate banking, Chris Sullivan, commented on channel4.com: “We are the biggest lender to SMEs in the country, and have identified £20bn in surplus deposits that we want to put to work to support the economy. But we constantly hear that businesses can’t get the finance they need. We have to bridge this gap.”

The view of customers, business groups, regulators and the government will all be taken into account for the report and SME customers will be able to use a special website to provide feedback on RBS’ lending. The results of the report and advice on what changes need to be made will be published at a later date.

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