Lloyds share sale: Government reduces taxpayer stake to below 17%

The total recouped from the bank’s bailout stands at £11.5 billion

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The Independent Online

The Government has reduced its stake in Lloyds bank to below 17 per cent, bringing the total recouped from the bank’s bailout to £11.5 billion.

Lloyds had to be bailed out with £22.5 billion of taxpayer money during the financial crisis, giving the government a 41 per cent stake.

Since 2013 the Government has been selling off the bank to investors through share sales.

"Today's announcement shows the further progress made in returning Lloyds Banking Group to full private ownership and enabling the taxpayer to get their money back," Lloyds Banking Group said in a statement.

A plan to sell off shares to investors was due to finish in June but has been extended to the end of July to help meet Chancellor George Osborne’s promise to sell a further £9 billion in shares in 2015 and 2016.

There are also plans to extend the share sale to taxpayers, which could enable a full Government exit from the bank within the year.