Lloyds TSB says will sell HBOS' non-core assets
18th Sep 08, 7:48pm
Lloyds TSB has detailed its plans to buy and rescue HBOS, including focusing on British customers and on raising cash to strengthen its capital ratios through sales of non-core assets. Lloyds TSB did not specify in its announcement what assets were non-core assets and what would be sold, but HBOS' assets outside the UK include its BankWest operation in Australia and BOS International, which has lent around NZ$1.5 billion to property finance companies and property developers here in New Zealand. "Lloyds TSB's intention is that the combination will strengthen its ability to serve UK customers in these difficult markets," it said. "Specifically Lloyds TSB intends that new lending by the new combined bank for both UK mortgages and SMEs will continue at least at current levels and will expand as market conditions improve," it said. "On the asset side, the Group's focus on relationship lending and on "˜through the cycle' credit policies will enable lending growth at low risk." Lloyds TSB said it wanted to acclerate the improvement in its tier one capital ratio from 5.9% to well into the 6-7% range. "Lloyds TSB will therefore actively consider the potential disposal of non-core assets identified in the integration." For more background on BOS International's New Zealand operations, see this story here.