Lloyds Banking Group to shut 23 branches and shed another 640 jobs in cost-cutting drive

Lloyds Banking Group, Britain’s largest mortgage lender, will eliminate about 640 jobs and close 23 branches as part of a cost-cutting programme that started in October 2014.

The cuts are part of the plan to pare about 9,000 roles by 2017, the Accord labour union, which represents the bank’s employees, said in a statement.

The job losses, which take cuts under the programme to about 7,300 so far, are in divisions such as consumer banking, retail wealth management, and technology operations, with the bank seeking to redeploy some people in other positions.

The bank is creating about 115 new jobs as part of the changes.

“We expect to continue to have the biggest branch network in the UK,” Lloyds said in a statement confirming the reductions.

“The group’s policy is always to use natural turnover and to redeploy people wherever possible to retain their expertise and knowledge within the group,” it added.

The internal announcement of the job cuts and branch closures comes a day after chief executive Antonio Horta-Osorio wrote to reassure staff following the outcome of the Brexit referendum, and bought 100,000 Lloyds shares after the stock plunged by 25% in two days. 

He said the bank’s strategy “remains unchanged” and that the “fundamentals of the group are strong”.

Lloyds is considering deeper cuts beyond the 2014-2017 plan, and could complete the current programme ahead of schedule, sources recently said.


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