Wednesday, November 25, 2015

How 'Fred the Shred' wrecked world's largest company

Rise and fall of Royal Bank of Scotland, owner of Citizens Bank of Pennsylvania

How 'Fred the Shred' wrecked world's largest company

General Motors will close its plant near Wilmington, Del., idling the region's last 450 auto workers. (Michael Wirtz / Staff Photographer)

Bloomberg LP visits George Mathewson, who made Royal Bank of Scotland (owner of Citizens Bank of Pennsylvania, among other things) the world's largest bank, only to watch it get taken over by the UK government after his handpicked successor, Sir Fred "the Shred" Goodwin, a man who intimidated his would-be critics, made one deal too many at the wrong time. Story here

(Spelling corrected; link reset: )

For a less coherent but vastly entertaining view of RBS and other bank calamities by novelist John Lanchester in the London Review of Books, read here.

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About this blog

PhillyDeals posts interviews, drafts and updates that Joseph N. DiStefano writes alongside his Sunday and Monday columns and ongoing articles about Philadelphia-area business.

DiStefano studied economics, history and a little engineering at Penn. He taught writing and research at St. Joe’s. He has written for the Inquirer since 1989, except when he left a few times to work at Bloomberg and elsewhere. He wrote the book Comcasted, and raised six kids with his wife, who is a saint.

Reach Joseph N. at, 215.854.5194, @PhillyJoeD. Read his blog posts at and his Inquirer columns at Bloomberg posts his items at NH BLG_PHILLYDEAL.

Reach Joseph at or 215 854 5194.

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