Lloyds could axe 9,000 jobs in the next three years

<p>Lloyds could cut 9,000 jobs as part of a three-year plan.</p>

Lloyds Banking Group is allegedly preparing to announce up to 9,000 job cuts as part of a three-year plan, which is also expected to include some branch closures. The group currently operates more than 2,000 branches across the country through its Lloyds Bank, Bank of Scotland, and Halifax brands.

The announcement is expected to come next Tuesday (October 28th) as part of chief executive Antonio Horta-Osorio's strategic review of the business, when the bank will also publish its third quarter results.

According to the Telegraph, the bank is expected to reveal underlying profits growing by more than 50 per cent and may show evidence that it is moving closer to resuming dividends.

Some 45,000 roles have already been axed since Lloyds TSB rescued HBOS during the 2008 banking crisis. Lloyds would not comment on the scale of the job cuts, first reported by Sky News ahead of the announcement.

The government still holds a 25 per cent stake in the bank, but has reduced its holding from about 39 per cent through two separate share sales since September last year. It was originally bailed out with £20 billion.

The cuts are believed to be in response to the shift of many customers from physical branches to internet. Analysts quoted by the BBC say that will allow it to reduce branch numbers in response to the rapid growth of online banking.

The bank posted its first annual profit since the financial crisis last year, reaching £3.8 billion in the first six months of this year. Lloyds Banking Group shares were up 0.55 per cent today at 10:35 ET. 

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