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Beverly Chandler

Smaller investors prioritised in Lloyds’ share sale – WMA comments

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The Government has announced that it will make available at least GBP2 billion worth of Lloyds Banking Group shares to people located in the UK, with priority going to those applying to invest less than GBP1,000.

 
Members of the public will be offered a discount of 5 per cent of the market price and those investors who hold their shares for more than a year will receive a bonus share for every 10 shares they buy, up to a value of GBP200. The shares are expected to be made available in the spring of 2016 with further details to be published in due course.
 
The Wealth Management Association (WMA) chief executive officer, Liz Field has commented on the announcement, saying:  “We are delighted that the government will sell shares worth at least GBP2 billion to private investors. We are particularly pleased that small investors seeking shares worth less than GBP1,000 will get priority and that registering interest has been made easy for them via the dedicated campaign webpage created.
 
“We have been calling for the government to offer more shares to private investors during these sell-offs and the government appears to have listened on this occasion. Wider share ownership creates stronger, more accountable organisations – a positive for the government and taxpayers alike.  The wider range of investors means that more people can hold management accountable for their decisions and it also means that people have a vested interest in seeing organisations like Lloyds succeed.
 
“This is great news for retail investors and whilst we await the detail, we would encourage other companies, particularly those with a retail focus, to give private investors the opportunity to participate in their share offerings.
 
“There have been too many occasions in recent times when private investors have been excluded and hopefully the Government’s announcement today can send a message to the rest of UK Plc that retail investors have a vital role to play in ensuring a diverse, accountable and vibrant equity culture. Share ownership creates a public that is more actively engaged in the free-market economy and its success. We have been campaigning for a cultural shift in the UK towards investment and savings, and we will continue to do so as it would be a huge boost to the wealth of individuals, business and the national economy.”
 
 
 
 

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