This week, the UK government sold yet another large stake of their shares in Lloyds Banking Group and made an estimated profit of £150 million.
The bank revealed that the UK Treasury sold around 731 million shares at a net worth of around £600 million, according to Business Insider.
During the financial crisis of 2008 and 2009, the government was forced to give £20.5 billion to Lloyds as shares were at an average price of 63.1p after fees were considered. However, yesterday Lloyds shares closed at 86.6p.
The government now own below 20% of Lloyds, which totals at over 14 billion shares and according to a report from Business Insider, Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osbourne is keen to sell the UK’s stakes in big banks. “George Osborne is reportedly keen to sell off the government’s entire stakes in both Lloyds and the Royal Bank of Scotland sooner rather than later – even if it means selling RBS shares at a loss.”
So far, Osborne has not sold any Royal Bank of Scotland shares and the government still owns 80% of the bank. However, since the financial crisis RBS shares have decreased in price to below when the government had to give the bank cash in order to recover but despite this money RBS failed to recover and made a loss of around £13.5 billion.
Data from S&P Global Market Intelligence suggest that the German lender is struggling to meet capital and earnings figures.
The central bank has tweaked its stimulus programme and is making a fresh effort to push Japan’s inflation rate above its 2% target.
A total of US$4.88 trillion of debt has been sold so far this year reports Dealogic, close to the level of 2007 when US$4.91 trillion of bonds were issued over the same period.
The German industrial gases group has ended talks with its US peer on a potential union to establish a market leader.