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RBS chief looks to stem the flow of investor anger

Stephen Hester, the chief executive of the Royal Bank of Scotland, has this week written to the Association of British Insurers (one of the most powerful investment groups in the UK) suggesting that he will not touch his potential multi-million pound share bonus pot until after 2014 - two years later than originally announced.

While this particular move has been well received by the Association of British Insurers there is still anger that with the UK government is attempting to reduce remuneration packages in the city, even though Stephen Hester, who was brought in by Gordon Brown, is set to receive a potential £10 million numeration package over the next couple of years. This is a bank which is 70% owned by the UK taxpayer and is set to pay its chief executive £1.2 million a year in basic salary, a £2 million annual non-cash bonus and up to 4.8 million in share awards. Quite how this has set an example for the rest of the industry is difficult to understand but the UK government appears to have taken a back seat yet again.

The problem with Stephen Hester's potential £10 million numeration package is the fact that other bankers in the city will compare their packages to this and demand lucrative deals. We could very quickly see a return to the former glory days of huge banking packages in the UK despite headlines in newspapers suggesting the government and the regulators will not let this happen.

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