Wikipedia: The price-to-book ratio, or P/B ratio, is a financial ratio used to compare a company's book value to its current market price. Book value is an accounting term denoting the portion of the company held by the shareholders; in other words, the company's total tangible assets less its total liabilities. The calculation can be performed in two ways, but the result should be the same each way.
The Royal Bank of Scotland, the bailed-out lender owned by the taxpayer, reported a narrowing of losses after a sharp decline in provisions for bad loans. Impairment charges tumbled a better-than-expected 40pc to £1.95bn compared with the same three months last year, pushing net losses down from £1.8bn last time to £1.15bn. Stephen Hester, the chief executive, said in an interim management statement: “Our third-quarter results demonstrate that we continue to make good progress in our recovery. We are delivering what we set out to achieve."
In an announcement to staff in its business centres across Britain, RBS yesterday said it was cutting another 3,500 jobs, taking the total number of UK-based staff made redundant to 20,600. Workers unions Unite described the cuts as a "horror story" for the UK and said it was "appalled" by the bank's actions, which come only a month after it reported a profit for the first half of the year of £1.1bn. "Just three weeks ago staff were boosted to hear of the £1.1bn half-year profit yet today thousands of them are told that they have no future at the bank," said Rob MacGregor, Unite national officer. "It will be a bitter pill for staff to swallow as RBS has decided to move some of the jobs abroad to the Far East, India and America."
This is actually patently obvious to anyone who considers it for more than a moment, it does need to be written down, articulated, specified through layers of abstraction as a constantly twittering software engineer in my timeline is currently obsessing about.
Its not complex, its simple, basic even; it's the rules of trading, the basics of exchange. You do not buy an obvious 'pig in a poke' no matter how little the government is trying to sell it to you for!
I wont bore you with a 19th century econo-agricultural explanation of the metaphor. I am no Corporate Finance Guru, I never was the whiz kid in a Porsche because of silkily advising on mergers and acquisitions but I know the basics.
Consumers are to be offered the services of three new high-street banks over the next few years under Government attempts to increase competition by breaking up the taxpayer-backed banks.
Alistair Darling, the chancellor, will this week outline plans to break up Lloyds Banking Group and RBS and sell-off the remaining “good” parts of Northern Rock.
Three new banks, each containing millions of customers and hundreds of branches will be offered to the highest bidder.