For a few brief months in 2007 and 2009, the Royal Bank of Scotland was the largest bank in the world. Then the Edinburgh-based giant - having rapidly grown its footprint to 55 countries and stretched its assets to GBP2.4 trillion under its hubristic and delinquent former boss Fred Goodwin - crashed to earth.
In Shredded, Ian Fraser explores the series of cataclysmic misjudgments, the toxic internal culture and the 'light touch' regulatory regime that gave rise to RBS/NatWest's near-collapse. He also considers why it became the most expensive bank in the world to bail out and why a culture of impunity was allowed to develop in the banking sector.
This new edition brings the story up to date, chronicling the string of scandals that have come to light since taxpayers rescued RBS and concluding with an evaluation of the attempts of the bank's post-crisis chief executives, Stephen Hester and Ross McEwan, to dismantle Goodwin's disastrous legacy and restore the damaged institutions to health.