Sale of Lloyds shares to begin in 'coming days'

Sale of Lloyds shares to begin in 'coming days'

HM Treasury has said it will restart the process of selling its stake in Lloyds "in the coming days".

Chancellor of the Exchequer Philip Hammond said the government would sell its 9.1 per cent stake through a trading plan, with the proposed retail sale scrapped.

The government – which took a 43.4 per cent stake in the company in 2009 – has already raised around £16.9bn from previous share sales.

Article continues after advert

A total of £20.3bn was injected into Lloyds Banking Group during the financial crisis.

Mr Hammond said: “Returning Lloyds to the private sector is in the interests of the bank, taxpayers and the country as a whole.

“That is why exiting our stake in Lloyds in an orderly way and at the best possible price is one of my top priorities as Chancellor.

“I have listened to the experts. Ongoing market volatility means it is not the right time for a retail offer.

“Our plan will get back all the cash taxpayers invested in Lloyds during the financial crisis and leave the bank in a better place to continue the crucial role it plays in supporting individuals, families and businesses up and down the UK.”

The Treasury said the trading plan has been started today and sales will begin “in the coming days” over the course of a year.

Previous Chancellor George Osborne had planned to sell the final Lloyds stake in spring this year through an offering to retail and institutional investors, with the former receiving a 5 per cent discount plus a bonus share for every 10 held for more than a year.

But this was put on hold at the beginning of this year because of market volatility.