Lloyds Banking Group could announce further job cuts as part of a digitally-focused restructuring package unveiled last year. The move will help the state-backed bank to save costs as it shifts to providing more digital services.
The roughly 1,000 job cuts is part of its overall target of 9,000 across 150 branch closures, which was announced last year as part of its three-year strategy which lasts until the end of 2017. Of this target, 2,360 job redundancies have already taken place. Some of those affected by the new announcement could be redeployed elsewhere in the bank, according to Sky News.
With this announcement, the total number of jobs the bank has shed since it rescued HBOS during the 2008 financial crisis sums up to about 50,000. An enquiry by Bank of England regulators into HBOS's failure last week placed the blame on the bank's management and board, leaving open the option of future regulatory sanctions against them.
HBOS's failure occurred as liquidity in the wholesale markets dried up. Its problems were so grave that the government pumped in £20.5bn (€29.2bn, $31bn) for a 43% stake in the bank. The government has since reduced its stake to just under 10% and generated £16bn in proceeds.
Under Antonio Horta-Osorio, Lloyds' chief executive, the combined bank has gradually returned to profits, with taxpayers making a small profit by selling shares. Lloyds as part of its transformation is investing £1.6bn in increased automation and digital services.
It expects that its "efficiency" measures would help it save about £1bn a year by the end of 2017. While 10 million of its customers bank online, more than 5 million use Lloyd's mobile banking services.
The timing of the announcement would appear strange primarily because Chancellor George Osborne in his Autumn Statement reiterated on 25 November said that the government planned to offer billions of pounds of discounted Lloyd's shares to ordinary investors next year.
Lloyds, however, declined to comment.