STEPHEN Hester last night turned down a share bonus package after discovering the shares were in the Royal Bank of Scotland.
The Royal Bank of Scotland chief executive was entitled to almost a million pounds worth of stock options under his Labour Party-approved contract, but waived his rights rather than take on even more shares in a company with which he is all too familiar.
Hester said: “No, you’re alright. I’m fine. You hang on to those. I’ll get some other shares.
“Don’t get me wrong, RBS shares are really nice but I’m just not at that point in my life. It’s not the RBS shares, it’s me.”
But a senior source at the taxpayer-owned bank said: “It’s not him, it’s the shares. He turned up to the big annual bonus meeting all excited, saying ‘okay, what do I get?’.
“Then the committee chairman said ‘well Stephen, we’ve got you these lovely RBS shares’. You should have seen his face.
“He was like, ‘What? I spend a year turning up for work on a fairly regularly basis and you offer me shares in the Royal Bank of Scotland? I’m not saying I deserve Apple, but maybe a bit of Glaxo or Imperial Tobacco. Where’s that fucking contract?’.”
Hestar added: “It’s a shame because I was going to spend all that money in the shops.
“I’m really into hill walking at the moment so I was going to buy about five hundred grand’s worth of stuff from Blacks, but now I suppose they’ll all have to lose their jobs.”
Julian Cook, chief economist at Donnelly-McPartlin, said: “Hester’s bonus refusal has been welcomed by both George Osborne and Ed Miliband which means it must be an absolutely terrible idea.
“But at least everyone will be able to feel slightly less bitter and resentful for about 30 seconds.”