Lloyds hires advisers in possible sale

LLOYDS has hired advisers for the possible sale of its Scottish Widows asset management arm, as it prepares for a likely regulatory demand to raise more capital, sources said.

Banks are having to consider further disposals after the Bank of England said they must raise a total of £25bn of extra capital by the end of the year, to be in a position to absorb future loan losses.

Industry sources and analysts say Lloyds, heavily exposed to the housing market where prices have declined in some parts of the country and whose capital has been dented by the cost of compensating customers for mis-selling, is one of the banks facing a shortfall, which could be in the region of £3bn.

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Lloyds has hired Deutsche Bank to advise on the possible sale, sources familiar with the matter said. But they stressed a formal sale process had not yet begun and that Scottish Widows’ insurance business was not up for sale.

Lloyds and Deutsche Bank declined to comment.

Scottish Widows had £141.7bn under management at the end of 2012.