The latest news from the finance sector.
RBS upbeat despite loss
The part state-owned Royal Bank of Scotland revealed a £1.4bn loss for quarter three 2010 in its interim statement released last month, compared with a £1.1bn profit in the previous quarter.
Without an £825m cost of insurance through government’s asset protection scheme and an £856m payable on its debt — charges which chief executive Stephen Hester says “obscure our underlying story” — the bank had operating profits of £726m for the third quarter.
This is up by £250m on the previous three months.
The bank says it is on well on its way to meeting its government set target of lending £50bn by next March, having lent £30.9bn so far.
Corporate tax reforms revealed
Government has published the first details of its Corporate Tax Reform programme, consisting of a series of measures designed to make the UK a more competitive place to do business.
The document — ‘Corporate Tax Reform: delivering a more competitive system’ — was released alongside the new growth strategy in late November. It includes new Controlled Foreign Company rules which should entail more intellectual property and tax remaining on British shores, and a commitment to the introduction of a Patent Box, which will see only 10% corporate tax payable on profits from UK patents.
UK companies will, further, not be liable to pay corporate tax at home on money earned from foreign branches through an opt-in scheme, which will commence next year.
The new measures follow the Coalition’s commitment in the June ‘emergency’ budget to lower the main rate of Corporation tax from 28% to 24% over the next four years.
The Exchequer Secretary to the Treasury, David Gauke MP, said: “In recent years, too many businesses have left the UK amid concerns over tax competitiveness. It’s time to reverse this trend. Our tax system was once viewed as an asset. And it needs to be an asset again.”