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AuM, Income Rises At Royal Bank Of Scotland's Private Banking Arm

Tom Burroughes, Group Editor , London, 14 February 2020

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Results were broadly stronger for last year, and investment performance was a particular stand-out, the CEO of the private banking arm said today.

The private banking arm of Royal Bank of Scotland, covering Coutts and Adam & Company, reported a small rise in total income for 2019, coming in at £777 million ($1.014 billion), versus £775 million in the previous year. Operating profit dipped to £297 million from £303 million.

The cost/income ratio expanded to 62.5 per cent as at 31 December 2019, from 61.7 per cent a year before, RBS, in which the UK government still holds an ownership stake a decade after the financial crisis, said in a statement.

Assets under management inched up to £30.4 billion at the end of last year, rising from £26.4 billion a year before, it said. Lending increased by £1.2 billion to £15.5 billion, rising by 8.4 per cent.

“We are proud of the very good financial results delivered in 2019 and in particular the increase in new clients we have welcomed to the Private Bank. In total, we have achieved 31% growth in new clients year-on-year which is a good indicator for the future growth of the franchise,” Peter Flavel, private banking chief executive, said. 

“Strong lending growth of £1.2 billion demonstrates that our approach to tailored lending for high net worth borrowers continues to deliver results, through personalised expertise and an understanding of the unique and complex requirements of our clients,” he continued.

Flavel said investment clients had logged “strong returns” and latest performance numbers show double-digit returns across strategies in 2019. For example, the Coutts multi-asset funds had their best year since they were established in 2012, with the performance figures meaning that nearly all (10/12) of its funds are top quartile over one, three and five years. 

Across the whole of the RBS group, it reported a profit, attributable to ordinary shareholders, of £3.133 billion for 2019, against £1.622 billion in 2018.

The group said its The Royal Bank of Scotland name will be changed to NatWest later this year, a move that might raise eyebrows for severing a link to the organisation's Scottish base and connections.

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