According to sources at Lloyds (LON:LLOY) this morning, the FTSE banking giant has completed the share buyback scheme which began on March 8th this year.
In a statement from Lloyds, the board stated that: “In aggregate between 8 March and 24 August, the company repurchased 1,577,908,423 ordinary shares for an aggregate consideration of GBP1.00 billion.”
As of BST 09.40 Lloyds share price had risen 0.49 pence to 61.33 a rise of 0.81 per cent. It has since waned a little and is currently standing at 60.8, marginally down 0.04 (0.07%), in contrast to the benchmark index itself which is still slightly up by 0.3 per cent to 7605.13 as of BST 11.20.
Buyback completion follows profit rise
On August 1st, LBG reported that its first half profit had jumped 23 per cent as compensation claims and costs reduced by almost 50 per cent. The rise in profits may have enabled the final buyback of shares in the group which returned to private ownership in May 2017 when the government sold off the last of its shares following a successful turnaround of the lender under the leadership of Antonio Horta-Osorio.
Lloyds has recently found itself in the unenviable position of having no option but to appoint Deloitte as it’s next auditor as reported by The Times, as the other big four accountants all have conflicts of interest. Deloitte is set to take on the auditing if the banking group from 2021 as the other firms are connected to rival companies or, as in the case of KPMG, audit a company that Lloyds itself bailed out, HBOS. Lloyds’ situation has mounted pressure upon politicians and regulators, who meet today to discuss the situation, to make reforms to the audit market.