Lloyds Banking Group is to hand more than £3bn in dividends and surplus capital to shareholders and has awarded its chief executive a bumper £6.4m payout just nine months after returning to full private ownership following its taxpayer bailout in 2008.
The group, the largest bank in Britain with 27 million customers, posted a 24% jump in pretax profits to £5.3bn. In a bonanza for shareholders, Lloyds hiked its dividend by 20% and announced a buyback programme worth an extra £1bn. The surge in profits and payouts saw Lloyds shares climb nearly 3% higher.
The chief executive António Horta-Osório’s pay, including bonuses, increased 11% to £6.4m in 2017 from £5.8 in 2016.
Unions said it contrasted with an average pay increase for staff of just 2% in 2017.