Royal Bank of Scotland Plays Scrooge With Staff's Christmas

EDINBURGH -- The Royal Bank of Scotland Group (RBS) has told staff it will not subsidize any Christmas parties or other end-of-year extravaganzas as the troubled UK lender seeks to cutbacks on perks, The (London) Daily Telegraph reported Saturday.

In an internal memo, RBS's chief financial officer Chris Kyle warned employees that not only would festive parties have to come out of their own pockets, but no one would receive new BlackBerry devices, headsets or any other telecoms equipment.

The company also was not going to pay for any new magazine or newspaper subscriptions, according to the report.

"As we head into the last quarter, there is a current need to further tighten and minimize the rate of spend on non-staff costs," Kyle wrote in an email.

The cuts come after RBS, which is 83 percent owned by the UK government, had its ratings downgraded by Moody's Investors Service and Fitch Ratings. Earlier this week, Credit Suisse also described the bank as the "most vulnerable" in Europe.

RBS received the world's biggest bailout during the financial crisis, at a cost of $70 billion to the UK taxpayer.