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U.K. Government sells RBS shares for huge loss

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By Philip Andrew Churm

Britain has sold off some of its shares in Royal Bank of Scotland, making a loss of more than €2.6 billion.

The opposition Labour Party has slammed the government’s decision to offload 7.7 percent of its stake in RBS which the Treasury rescued in the 2008 financial crisis.

In a tweet, the Chancellor, Philip Hammond, described it as a “significant step” towards returning the bank to private hands and suggested that the proceeds would “go towards the reducing the national debt.”

But Labour said it was an example of the Government’s mismanagement of RBS and that taxpayers would pay the price.

The shares were sold for 271 pence per share, almost half of what the government paid for them ten years ago.

The sale brings the government’s holding in the bank down to around 62.4 per cent.