Govt eyes ‘tell Sid’ Lloyds share sale

The Government is considering a “tell Sid”-style retail offer of shares in Lloyds Banking Group.

The Sunday Times reports the Treasury is looking at plans for a share sale similar to the 1986 British Gas “tell Sid” advertising campaign. It is also said to be focusing on way to return Lloyds to full privatisation in the early part of the next parliament.

A source told the newspaper the share sale would likely be offered to the public at a discount.

They said: “I don’t think the Government will be able to drip feed £9bn into the market within its targeted timeline.

“A retail offer with a 5 per cent to 10 per cent discount would get the public involved and would be a nice way of returning cash to the taxpayer.”

But the cost of any retail sale may be prohibitive, as it would have to be extensively marketed and be open to the public for a certain amount of time.

It comes after the Budget speech last week, where Chancellor George Osborne said the Government plans to offload a further £9bn in Lloyds shares. It currently holds a stake of just under 23 per cent in the bank.

Osborne also set out plans to sell of £13bn of mortgage assets held by bailed out banks Bradford & Bingley and Northern Rock.

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