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RBS suffers sliding profits but H1 mortgage lending at £14.7bn

  • 05/08/2016
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RBS suffers sliding profits but H1 mortgage lending at £14.7bn
Losses at taxpayer-owned Royal Bank of Scotland came in at £2bn in the first half of the year, but the bank’s gross mortgage lending showed the bank hcommitted to massive mortgage lending growth to almsot £15bn in H1, interim results show.

The bank’s results for the first half of 2016, showed that gross mortgage lending of £14.7bn in H1 2016, which has been driving upwards since H1 2015 when it totalled £9.1bn, to 13.6bn in H2 last year.

RBS has a mortgage market share of approximately 12%. The bank has increased its mortgage adviser headcount by 15% since the same period last year, with 1,001 brokers now on board.

It added that its lending figures were supported by a competitively priced two-year fixed product and related campaign. The bank launched a market-leading 0.99% two-year fixed rate earlier this year.

RBS was hammered by losses during the first half which included litigation and conduct costs relating to payment protection insurance, its 2008 shareholder dispute and a provision set aside by its Irish brand Ulster Bank for an industry-wide examination into tracker mortgages ordered by the Central Bank of Ireland last year.

RBS issued a warning that the Brexit vote has created “considerable uncertainty” in its “core market” and it is continuing to review the implications.

“In the current low rate and low growth environment, achieving our longer term cost: income ratio and return targets by 2019 is likely to be more challenging,” it said.

RBS has repeatedly postponed the separation and divestment of its Williams & Glyn brand which has over 300 branches and around 3,000 customers. The bank’s board has concluded that RBS will not continue with the programme of separating the brand itself and will instead “prioritise exploring alternative means to achieve divestment”.

Earlier this week reports emerged that Santander had made a formal offer to acquire the brand.

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