In late May, George Osborne said that he’d like to privatise £23bn of government assets, and he raised the stakes last week by announcing the phased sale of the state’s stake in RBS. Here are some key facts and figures:
The government floated 60 per cent of the company in 2013 at 330p per share.
It sold a further 15 per cent stake last week at 500p a share.
Royal Mail reported annual adjusted operating profits of £740m before transformation costs in the year to 29 march 2015, up 6 per cent on a year earlier.
Parcel revenues rose 1 per cent, but letter volumes and revenues continue to fall.
LLOYDS BANKING GROUP
The government is continuing to dripfeed its shares in the bank onto the market, with its stake down to 17.9 per cent last week. It once held 41 per cent of all shares.
Lloyds’s share price has risen from around 25p in 2012 to above 85p.
The bank paid its first dividend in six and a half years in the 2014 financial year, at 0.75p per share. Some analysts expect this to rise to 4p per share by the end of 2016.
First quarter 2015 results saw the bank make an underlying profit of £2.178bn.
The government is expected to distribute discounted shares to investors in the coming year.
The government’s bailout of RBS saw it take a 80 per cent stake in the bank. It paid 500p a share.
RBS shares have remained at about 350p for the past two years.
The bank has not made an annual profit since the financial crisis and has not paid a dividend.
Progress has been made in its core domestic business, which has returned to profitability.