Page last updated at 12:37 GMT, Tuesday, 10 November 2009

Lloyds cuts 1,000 Scottish posts

Lloyds sign
Lloyds said the move was necessary in the wake of its merger with HBOS

About 1,000 Scottish posts are to be cut by Lloyds Banking Group by the end of next year, it has been announced.

They will be among 5,000 posts which will be closed across the UK in group operations, insurance and mortgage processing.

Some of the job losses will be among temporary staff, Lloyds said.

The bank said there would also be some redeployment, bringing the total number of permanent job losses in Scotland to about 500.

Lloyds has already cut more than 6,000 jobs so far this year, almost 1,000 of them in Scotland.

We have mitigated the impact on positions through redeployment and the release of contractors and temporary staff
Mark Fisher
Lloyds Banking Group

A spokesman for the banking group said the move would help reduce overlap caused by the merger between Lloyds and HBOS last year.

It is understood that Scottish Widows, Clerical Medical and the general insurance operations of Lloyds are all being looked at as part of the cuts.

A spokesman for Lloyds Banking Group, (LBG) in Scotland said: "We're able now in the areas such as group operations and insurance to have some clarity as to how we see the picture unfolding to the end of 2010, which is why we are making the announcement today.

"We will brief staff in more detail when we are able to."

Lloyds group director Mark Fisher said: "We will continue to work closely with our colleagues affected by today's announcement to help them through these changes over the coming year.

"We have mitigated the impact on positions through redeployment and the release of contractors and temporary staff."

'Terrible news'

The announcement was strongly criticised by unions, who called for the posts to be cut without resorting to compulsory redundancies.

Wendy Dunsmore of Unite the union said she expected most of the job cuts in Scotland to fall in back office operations rather than insurance.

She agreed with LBG's assessment that about 1,000 posts would be affected north of the border.

And she said poor decisions by the former management were to blame.

"On the back of last week's announcement it's just another body blow for the staff.

"They are now reaping the mistakes of previous executives" she told the BBC.

Ged Nichols, general secretary of Accord, the union representing the largest number of former HBOS employees now working with Lloyds, said: "Today's announcement is terrible news for the employees who are affected and their families.

"We always recognised that some job losses were inevitable as Lloyds TSB integrated HBOS operations, but the scale of changes announced today will leave many staff in shock.

"Some of those who are affected will have a long wait before anything definite happens and they may find the uncertainty very difficult to cope with."

Taxpayer support

Rob MacGregor, national officer for the Unite union, accused Lloyds - which is 43% owned by UK taxpayers - of displaying "corporate arrogance".

He added: "This country's financial sector should be looking towards the future, rather than continuing to slash jobs without proper consideration of how to rebuild the public's confidence in our tarnished banking sector."

Last week, Lloyds revealed that it was to receive a further £5.7bn in taxpayer support from the Treasury and sell at least 600 branches.

The Royal Bank of Scotland, which has also been bailed out by the taxpayer, announced last week it would cut almost 4,000 retail banking jobs across the UK.

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