Peter Hoskin

Why Fred Goodwin delayed his pension concession

Why Fred Goodwin delayed his pension concession
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Now that Fred Goodwin's poised to pay back a chunk of his pension, I'd recommend that CoffeeHousers read Jane Croft and Jean Eaglesham's blow-by-blow account of the saga in today's FT.  Crucially, it answers the question of why Goodwin has waited until now to make the decision:

"His decision finally to do so came several days after the legal review concluded that there was no conduct on Sir Fred’s part that would justify reducing the pension.

Insiders say the timing is no coincidence. Sir Fred was awaiting that exoneration before agreeing voluntarily to reduce his pension to ensure the gesture could not be misinterpreted as an admission of wrongdoing on his part.

Now both RBS and Sir Fred believe the matter has been settled. But in the eyes of the British public his rehabilitation may be less readily achieved."

And speaking of rehabilitations: what of Lord Myners, the City Minister?  It's easy to forget that - until around the time that Jacqui Smith's expenses came to light - Myners was perhaps the Most Embarrassing Minister in Government.  His (in)action over Goodwin's pension, and his subsequent performance in front of the Treasury Select Committee, displayed sheer incompetence.  Yet he remains; hoping - I imagine - that Goodwin's belated decision will draw a line under the whole affair.