Hammond jumping the gun with RBS shares sale | Nils Pratley
Money tied up in RBS can be put to better use, but the chancellor could have got more if he’d just held his breath
A thumping £2.1bn loss on the sale of a 7.7% slug of Royal Bank of Scotland shares hurts, but let’s not pretend there was a realistic prospect of making a profit for the public purse. Nor is it really correct to view the numbers through a conventional investment lens. The state’s original purchase of an 83% stake in a two-stage bailout in 2008 and 2009 was not primarily done to make money. It was an emergency rescue of RBS, designed to prevent a bigger calamity in the British banking system and to avoid a deeper recession. On that score, the exercise roughly succeeded.
Source: Guardian Transport