Lloyds sees share price reach government break-even point

Lloyds Banking Group's shares advanced Friday to a level which the government considers high enough to exceed the break-even point for a sale of its stake in the company.

Lloyds Banking Group's shares advanced Friday to a level which the government considers high enough to exceed the break-even point for a sale of its stake in the company.

The state-backed lender rose 3.02% to 62.75p at 13:57, above the government's 61.2p break-even price.

Industry sources and analysts have said the government wants to start selling when the shares are trading consistently above 61.2p. The state is yet to set a date for a sale.

Mike van Dulken, head of research at Accendo Markets, told Reuters the government has a predicament over whether to sell while the iron is hot or delay in order to allow the shares to maintain their current momentum.

"It's a big trade-off between returning the shares to the markets as quickly as possible (well before the 2015 election anyway), and taking the opportunity to make up for some of the costs taxpayers incurred via forced bailouts," he said.

It is understood the government would want the shares to be firmly established at a level comfortably over break-even before it begins to undo its stake, a source told the news agency.

Britain's finance ministry declined to comment.

RD

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