U.K. Financial Conduct Authority CEO Andrew Bailey has sent a so-called skilled persons' report into the alleged mistreatment of small business customers by Royal Bank of Scotland Group Plc's now-defunct Global Restructuring Group to U.K. Treasury Select Committee Chair Nicky Morgan.
The committee had set a Feb. 16 deadline for the regulator to publish or provide the report. A leaked version of the 350-page report has been published online by an individual linked to small-business clients of the now-defunct turnaround division, and its contents have also been aired by members of Parliament under the principle of parliamentary privilege.
In his letter to Morgan, Bailey wrote that publication of the report had proven "impossible" for the regulator because it could not secure the required consents from individuals named in it.
He also cited section 348 of Parliament's confidentiality regime in stating that since "the initial leak of the full report was precluded by s348, we would be breaking the law if we were to publish the report without necessary consents."
Bailey said the FCA had intended to complete the necessary process for publication on conclusion of its focused investigation into the functioning of the turnaround group at RBS. He also reiterated that the FCA will "continue to hold RBS and its senior management to account to ensure the recommendations" from the report are implemented "fully within RBS."
Members of the Treasury select committee will now meet to decide "whether, and if so, when, to publish the report," Morgan said, adding that she would ask committee members Feb. 20, "to agree to publish the final, unredacted report under parliamentary privilege as soon as possible."