Lloyds Banking Group announced on Wednesday that they plan to cut another 1,200 jobs next year. This is part of the bank’s ongoing strategy to cut costs and improve returns for shareholders. Job reductions are expected in group operations, retail, customer products and marketing, finance and risk divisions. Earlier this year, the bank said that it expected the number of branch closures to double to 400. So far, it has closed nearly 100 branches in the country. These cuts are attributed to the increased number of customers banking online or digitally, as well as the sustained period of low interest rates.
Laith Khalaf, a senior analyst at Hargreaves Lansdown, said that it is not surprising that Lloyds continues to cut jobs as part of its efficiency drive. In his opinion, this is driven by the uncertain economic environment, which the banking sector is currently facing. He continues, “Job losses are never positive news, but what Lloyds is doing at least in part reflects an ongoing shift in how customers transact with their banks.” Last week, the Government postponed the proposition to sell the bank’s remaining shares as a ‘retail offer’ directly to the public because of the ongoing market volatility. Instead, it will now gradually sell the shares through a ‘trading plan’ to investment organisations and pension funds. This strategy will ensure that the bank will be returned to its full private ownership.