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United Kingdom

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BEST BANK: Royal Bank of Scotland
BEST DEBT HOUSE: Barclays Capital
BEST M&A HOUSE: Rothschild

Royal Bank of Scotland is Euromoney’s choice for best bank in the UK because, unlike many of its peers, both its retail and wholesale businesses are strong and making progress.

RBS operates the largest UK retail network with efficiency, running centralized processing and support services. Its move towards more prime and secured lending also means that it has suffered relatively low credit impairment charges in its UK retail business, which has also emerged less bruised than many of its biggest competitors from mis-selling charges.

By contrast, although Barclays has arguably the premier wholesale business in the UK, thanks to the strength of its investment bank Barclays Capital, the bank’s UK retail business is decidedly lacklustre. Lloyds TSB has both a lacklustre retail and wholesale business, while global bank HSBC’s UK businesses are both smaller and so far less dynamic than those of RBS.