RBS gets waiver from tough US banking rules

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state-backed lender Royal Bank of Scotland has been granted a waiver by the US Federal Reserve from onerous new rules coming in next year for big overseas banks.

RBS, which has dramatically shrunk in size since needing a taxpayer bailout in 2008 that has left the government owning 80 per cent of the company, plans to reduce its US assets to below $50bn (£32.93bn) by the time the new rules come into force.

The rules will apply to all overseas banks with over $50bn of US assets. It will require firms such as Deutsche Bank and Barclays to set up separate US holding companies with strict capital and reporting requirements.

The Fed said in a notice on its website that it had approved RBS’s request for a waiver from the requirement to form the US intermediate holding company by July 2016. The Fed did not give a reason for its decision.

RBS sold 29 per cent of its US bank Citizens in September and plans to cut its stake further this year.