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Sir Howard Davis takes over RBS chairmanship

  • 01/09/2015
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Sir Howard Davis takes over RBS chairmanship
Sir Howard Davis, former chairman of the FSA and life fund manager the Phoenix Group, has replaced Sir Philip Hampton as chairman of Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS).

Davis became a non-executive member of the board in July this year. Between 1997 and 2003 Davies was chairman of the Financial Services Authority (FSA) after which he took up the position of director at the London School of Economics until May 2011.

Recently, as chairman of the Airports Commission, Davies carried out a three-year review of the sector which resulted in the recommendation to expand Heathrow.

In an interview with the Financial Times, former director of the FSA Paul Sharma described Davies as ‘an incredibly impressive individual with a very strong intellect’.

Another former FSA colleague Christine Farnish praised him for being ‘quick to see the bigger picture, pull together a whole range of complex issues and drive to the nub of the problem’.

But Mark Garnier, a Conservative MP and member of the Treasury Select Committee, said Davis could be blamed for the mistakes made by the FSA which were uncovered when the financial crisis hit the UK in 2007, despite his departure four years earlier. Garnier said that Davis seemed fully qualified for the job but his legacy as the first chairman of the failed regulator may haunt him in his new role.

At the start of August the government began selling its shares in RBS, offloading a 5.4% stake in the bank at 330p per share raising proceeds of £ But Chancellor George Osborne was criticised for selling the shares below the 500p per share the government paid for their when it bailed the bank out during the crisis.

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