Govt commits to Lloyds share sale for retail investors

The Government has committed to launch a sale of Lloyds Banking Group shares to the public in the next 12 months.

In an announcement today, the Treasury said further details on the share sale to retail investors will be set out in due course.

It comes as the Government reveals it has reduced its holding in Lloyds by a further 1 per cent, taking its stake in the bank to below 9 per cent.

The Government has also extended its plan to sell off its share in Lloyds to the end of the year. The scheme had been due to end on 30 June.

Shares have been sold for an average price of over 80p, compared to the average 73.6p originally paid by the Government.

Chancellor George Osborne says: “The trading plan has been a huge success, with almost £3.5bn raised for the taxpayer so far. This means we have now recovered over £10.5bn in total, more than half of the taxpayers’ money put into Lloyds.

“But we’re determined to get on with the job of returning Lloyds to private ownership. That’s why I’m extending the plan for six months so that we can make even more progress in returning money to the taxpayer and paying down the national debt.”

The Government pledged in the Budget to sell down a further £9bn of Lloyds shares in 2015/16.