Osborne to Decide on Possible RBS Bad Bank in Next Two Weeks

U.K. Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne said he’ll take a decision on whether Royal Bank of Scotland Group Plc (RBS) should be broken up and its toxic assets spun off into a “bad bank” in the next couple of weeks.

“It’s the next big decision in my in-tray,” Osborne said at a Reuters event in London today. “A lot of people out there said we should look at the case for a bad bank. It’s clear to me that we do need to address some of the problems at RBS.”

Osborne was speaking shortly after one of his deputies, Treasury minister Sajid Javid, said at the Bloomberg Dealmakers Summit in London that the government has yet to decide on the timing and format of the sale of the remaining stakes in another state-controlled lender, Lloyds Banking Group Plc. (LLOY)

RBS, which received the biggest bailout of any bank in the world during the financial crisis, is still too weighted with poor assets to be sold, Osborne has previously said. The U.K. made a profit of about 60 million pounds ($97 million) on the first sale last month of its shares in Lloyds, which the government took on as part of its 20 billion-pound bailout of Britain’s biggest mortgage lender in 2008.

To contact the reporters on this story: Thomas Penny in London at tpenny@bloomberg.net; Svenja O’Donnell in London at sodonnell@bloomberg.net; Kitty Donaldson in London at kdonaldson1@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: James Hertling at jhertling@bloomberg.net

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