Lloyds bank says chief executive to step down

20th September 2010, Comments 0 comments

Britain's state-rescued Lloyds bank announced on Monday that its chief executive Eric Daniels will retire next year.

"Eric Daniels, group chief executive of Lloyds Banking Group, has informed the board of his intention to retire in a year's time," the lender said in a statement, adding that he will continue until a successor has been found.

Lloyds Banking Group (LBG) is 41-percent owned by the British government after a massive state bailout at the height of the global financial crisis.

Daniels, 59, faced criticism after overseeing the 2008 government-brokered takeover of former rival Halifax Bank of Scotland (HBOS), which was saddled with high-risk investments in the property sector.

Lloyds had suffered enormous losses in 2008 and 2009, as bad debts rocketed in the wake of the HBOS rescue and a deep recession.

However, Lloyds bounced back into profit in the first half of 2010, as bad debts fell sharply despite challenging economic conditions.

"The entire board and I are grateful to Eric for his leadership as chief executive since June 2003, particularly since the announcement of the acquisition of HBOS in September 2008," added chairman Win Bischoff on Monday.

"The successful integration of the two companies and the sooner than expected return to profitability of the enlarged Lloyds Banking Group are testament to his disciplined and vigorous leadership during a time of unprecedented financial turmoil.

"It is to Eric's credit that LBG is in such an excellent position for the next phase of its development."

US national Daniels becomes the third senior banking boss to step down in recent weeks.

Two weeks ago, Barclays said that its chief executive John Varley will step down in March 2011 after more than six years at the helm.

In addition, it was also announced that HSBC chairman Stephen Green is quitting to become Britain's trade minister. Green will take up the job early next year after leaving HSBC before the end of 2010.

© 2010 AFP

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