Former HBOS CEO volunteers pension cut, knighthood removal after scathing report

Tuesday 09 April 2013 18.20
HBOS had to be bailed out by the British government in 2008
HBOS had to be bailed out by the British government in 2008

Former HBOS chief executive James Crosby has said he has asked British authorities to remove his knighthood and will forego 30% of his pension after being criticised for his role in the collapse of the British bank.

Mr Crosby's unexpected gesture came after a scathing report by British lawmakers on Friday, which said there had been a "colossal failure" of senior management at HBOS.

It put the blame on Mr Crosby and two other former bosses.

Mr Crosby stepped down as HBOS chief executive in 2006 and shortly after was awarded a knighthood, but the bank had to be bailed out by British taxpayers in 2008.

"In view of what has happened subsequently to HBOS, I believe that it is right that I should now ask the appropriate authorities to take the necessary steps for its removal," he said in a statement.

"I am deeply sorry for what happened at HBOS and the ensuing consequences for former colleagues, shareholders, taxpayers and society in general," he said.

Crosby said he would forego 30% of the gross pension entitlement payable to him during the rest of his lifetime, which amounts to £580,000 pounds a year.

He would discuss with the pension scheme's trustees how the reduction would be implemented, and whether the amount waived should go to support good causes, or benefit shareholders.

He said the pension had been built up over his 30 year career, including 12 years at Halifax and HBOS, and was "entirely contractual in nature".

Since Friday's report politicians have said the award should be cut or Mr Crosby should volunteer to reduce it.