Lloyds to axe another 400 jobs

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The Independent Online

Lloyds bank is to axe another 400 jobs, with a further 185 posts at risk, union leaders said today.

Unite attacked the latest wave of job losses which the union said would lead to the closure of all Black Horse centres, the loans arm of Lloyds.

The union warned Lloyds not to repeat the "disastrous" strategies of last year when more than 15,500 jobs were cut.

Rob MacGregor, the union's national officer, said: "Unite is deeply disappointed that the Lloyds Banking Group has taken the decision to close all of the Black Horse centres with the loss of 400 jobs.

"At a time when many families are struggling to control their finances and businesses need access to credit, Unite is opposed to the shutting down of these valued local centres.

"Unite is warning the LBG not to repeat their approach in 2009 where staff faced death by a thousand cuts as weekly announcements of job losses were made. The strategy last year has had a devastating effect on staff and created job insecurity for most colleagues."

Unite said it was seeking redeployment opportunities for those affected by the latest cuts.

Around 400 jobs will go through the Black Horse closures, while a further 185 in the retail and wholesale businesses are at risk, said Unite.

Lloyds confirmed it was making a number of changes in its wholesale and retail divisions, affecting 685 staff by March 2011 and leading to a loss of 585 jobs.

The bank said it was bringing some insurance work, currently administered by a third-party supplier based in the UK, back into the group to be processed at its centres in Bristol and Edinburgh, over the next three years, creating some new jobs.

Lloyds confirmed the closure of its Black Horse personal finance centres, with the loss of 455 jobs, with a further 130 jobs cut in its retail division.

Lloyds said in a statement: "Lloyds Banking Group is committed to working through these changes with colleagues carefully and sensitively.

"All affected colleagues have been briefed by their line manager today. Unions were consulted prior to this announcement and will continue to be consulted throughout the process.

"The group's policy is to use natural turnover and to redeploy people wherever possible to retain their expertise and knowledge within the group.

"Whenever it can, it also brings work back into the group within the UK. Where it is necessary for colleagues to leave the company, it will look to achieve this by offering voluntary severance and by making less use of contractors and agency colleagues.

"Compulsory redundancies will be a last resort."