The Royal Bank of Scotland said on Friday that it has set aside, as an impairment provision, 100 million pounds ($128 million), in order to account for economic uncertainties - Brexit being the biggest concern for the British lender.
The bank reported lower-than-expected profit for the third quarter of this year on Friday, on the back of a "highly competitive market and an uncertain economic outlook."
As a result, RBS shares fell nearly 5 percent shortly after the market open in Europe.
The bank posted a net profit of £448 million for the third quarter of 2018, below the £507 million expected by analysts, according to a bank-compiled average of their estimates, Reuters reported.
The U.K. lender had reported £392 million in net profit for the third quarter of 2017.
Here are some of the key highlights for the quarter:
- Litigation and conduct costs: £389 million versus £125 million in the third quarter of 2017
- Operating expenses: £2.4 billion versus £2.1 billion in the third quarter of 2017
- Common Equity Tier 1 ration: 16.7 percent versus 16.1 percent in the second quarter of this year
"This is a good performance, set against a highly competitive market and an uncertain economic outlook. We are growing lending in our target markets and are in a strong position to support the economy. We're aware there is much more work to do and are fully focused on improving for our customers," Ross McEwan, CEO of RBS said in a statement.
In the second quarter, the bank had announced it was going to start paying dividends to investors – for the first time in a decade.
The U.K. lender has been mired in a years-long legal saga with the DOJ over its selling of toxic mortgages in the U.S. in the run-up to the 2008 financial crisis. The lengthy settlement agreement process has prevented the bank from providing dividends to its shareholders. In May, RBS agreed to pay a £3.6 billion ($4.9 billion) penalty to the DOJ to end the investigation.
The payout of the charge is expected to pave the way for the U.K. government to sell its 71 percent stake in the bank, which has been majority taxpayer-owned since its bailout in 2008.