Investments  

Morning papers: RBS accused over small businesses

City regulators have been handed a dossier of evidence compiled by an adviser to Vince Cable which claims that Royal Bank of Scotland was deliberately wrecking viable small businesses to make profits for the bailed out bank, reports the Guardian.

The business secretary – a long-time critic of the banking industry’s lending practices – said some of the allegations were so serious that he had handed the report, compiled by businessman Lawrence Tomlinson, to the regulators and the bank. It has also been given to Sir Andrew Large, a former deputy governor of the Bank of England, whose report on lending failures by RBS will also be released on Monday.

Student loans worth £890m to be sold off

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Ministers on Monday confirmed a deal to sell off £890m worth of mortgage-style student loans, part of a wider drive to raise money from the liquidation of public assets, reports the Financial Times.

The £160m deal with Erudio Student Loans covers outstanding student loans owed by roughly 250,000 borrowers. It relates to the remaining 17 per cent of mortgage style loans taken out by students who began courses between 1990 and 1998.

Council workers in pension fund death spiral

Some local authority pension funds are so poorly funded that they are in a “death spiral”, raising questions about the retirement promises to millions of council workers, reports the Times.

A damning analysis for the Centre for Policy Studies reveals gross inefficiencies among the 101 local authority pension funds and suggests that they are being run for the benefit of vested interests.

US banks warn Fed interest cut could force them to charge depositors

Leading US banks have warned that they could start charging companies and consumers for deposits if the US Federal Reserve cuts the interest it pays on bank reserves, reports the Financial Times.

Depositors already have to cope with near-zero interest rates, but paying just to leave money in the bank would be highly unusual and unwelcome for companies and households.

Vince Cable to be grilled by MPs over Royal Mail sell-off

Vince Cable will face MPs this week to answer accusations that the Royal Mail was sold too cheaply, costing the taxpayer billions in lost potential income, reports the Daily Mail.

Shares were sold at 330p each, raising £1.7bn for the Government, but they have since soared by more than 60 per cent to 539p.