Exec pours cold water on rumors RBS will sell Citizens BankSeptember 17th, 2012 at 1:35 pm by Ted Nesi under Nesi's Notes, On the Main Site
“Citizens is a core franchise in a very attractive geography,” Bruce Van Saun, RBS’s group finance director of the Scottish bank, said at an investors conference last week, according to a Reuters story. “We have nothing big left to sell.”
Reuters reports, citing Van Saun, that Citizens’ return on equity this has year has been a “relatively weak” 8%, which has disappointed its parent bank in London. But he predicted that metric will reach 12% to 14% within a few years and said Citizens remains well-positioned in the U.S. market.
“We’re patient,” Van Saun said. “I think we are doing our shareholders a good turn to keep Citizens in the portfolio.” Citizens’ future as part of RBS has been in doubt ever since the bank was rescued by the British government at the height of the 2008 financial crisis; it remains majority-owned by U.K. taxpayers.
Citizens was the second-largest bank in Rhode Island by deposits as of June 30, 2011, with a 22% market share and $10 billion in local assets, according to FDIC data. RBS bought Citizens in 1988. The Projo’s John Kostrzewa has more here.
• Related: Big Brazilian bank Itau named a Citizens suitor; rumors heat up (Aug. 8)