12 December 2013

It's a flea-bite

The Guardian reports:
Lloyds Banking Group has been fined £28m for putting branch staff under such pressure to sell products in order to claim bonuses or avoid being demoted that they may have mis-sold them to customers.
£28 million may sound like a lot of money, but it is peanuts to Lloyds.  With annual revenues of over £34 billion and a net loss of £1.43 billion, the odd £28 million is neither here nor there.  Even with the additional bill for compensation, Lloyds admits the effect will not be material.
Lloyds says it expects to spend up to £200m settling the fine and other issues involved. It says this won't have a "material impact on the group", but it is likely to hit the bank's profitability and as part owners that means taxpayers will take a hit.
Hummph.  As the taxpayers have yet to see any dividend returns on their investment, any "hit" that they suffer is entirely notional.  In any case, as part owners of the bank, they or their representatives (are you listening Treasury?) should have been aware of what was going on, and put a stop to it.

So will the fine deter them from repeating their alleged crimes?  Do pigs fly?


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