Equities  

Government reduces Lloyds stake to 13%

Government reduces Lloyds stake to 13%

The government has sold a further 1 per cent shareholding in Lloyds Banking Group through the trading plan launched in December, taking its total holding to below 13 per cent.

As required by Financial Conduct Authority rules, Lloyds announced today (24 August) that the government’s shareholding in the bank crossed through a one percentage point threshold.

The government said this takes the total raised for the taxpayer to £14.5bn.

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The trading plan, which was launched on 17 December 2014 and will end no later than 31 December 2015, involves gradually selling shares in the market over time, “in an orderly and measured way”.

This follows on from July’s 1 per cent sell-off. All sales are used to reduce the national debt, the government said.

Chancellor George Osborne commented: “I am determined to build on this success, and to continue to return Lloyds to the private sector and reduce our national debt.”

In June, the government opted to extend the Lloyds’ trading plan for a further six months, as part of the next stage to return the bank to private ownership and get taxpayers’ money back.

In the last Budget the chancellor announced he would sell at least a further £9bn of Lloyds shares in 2015 to 2016.

donia.o’loughlin@ft.com