By Marcus Leach

Royal Bank of Scotland's (RBS) decision to award head Stephen Hester a bonus of £963,000 has come in for strong criticism.

At a time where the economy is suffering, jobs are being cut on an almost daily basis and confidence in the banking sector is worryingly low there is strong belief that no bankers should be taking bonuses, let alone one close to a million pounds.

Unite have branded the decision as 'disgusting', whilst Labour were quick to suggest that it proves the government's pledges to curb executive pay are 'utterly worthless'.

The bank, which is 82% owned by UK taxpayers, said the bonus was a fair reflection for Hester's work in 'rebuilding RBS'.

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