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Lloyds share price: Group to hire 700 financial advisers

Lloyds Banking Group (LON:LLOY) is planning to hire more than 700 financial advisers, The Financial Times has reported. The news comes after the bailed-out lender entered into a strategic wealth management partnership with Schroders (LON:SDR) in October.

Lloyds’ share price has surged in London this morning, having gained 1.16 percent to 57.54p as of 09:55 GMT, largely in line with the broader market rally which has seen the benchmark FTSE 100 index gain 1.01 percent to 7,142.43 points so far today. The group’s shares have lost more than 13 percent of their value over the past year, as compared with about a 0.7-percent gain in the Footsie.

Lloyds to hire financial advisers

The FT reported yesterday that Lloyds was planning to hire more than 700 financial advisers. The move followed the group’s JV with Schroders last year, with a stated goal of becoming a “top three UK financial planning business” within five years. According to internal documents seen by the newspaper,  it has set a goal of increasing its assets under management from about £13 billion to £25 billion.

While about 300 Lloyds advisers are expected to join the joint venture at launch later this year, the number is set to more than triple in the next five years. 

“We’re not afraid of having over 1,000”, a person with knowledge of the matter told the FT.

Analysts on bailed-out lender

Royal Bank of Canada reaffirmed Lloyds as an ‘outperform’ last week, with a price target of 80p, while Numis Securities initiated coverage of the bailed-out lender with a ‘hold’ rating, valuing the shares at 54p. According to MarketBeat, the company currently has a consensus ‘buy’ rating and an average price target of 73.88p.

Lloyds is scheduled to update investors on its full-year performance on February 20.

As of 10:17 GMT, Monday, 11 February, Lloyds Banking Group share price is 57.54p.

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