SNP KEEPS UP PRESSURE OVER LOCAL COMMUNITY BANKING CRISIS

The SNP has called on Bank of Scotland to reverse plans to close bank branches across Scotland, after Lloyds Banking Group unveiled a huge increase in profits for the year.

Lloyds Banking Group, which owns the Bank of Scotland, today announced a 13% increase in annual pre-tax profits, reporting that operating costs remained broadly steady over the last year.

Sandra White MSP recently led a debate in the Scottish Parliament condemning the Bank of Scotland’s proposed closure of seven branches across Scotland – including Glasgow St George’s Cross in her own constituency.

SNP politicians have also written to bosses at Santander about its plans to close 15 branches across Scotland, calling for a halt to these closures until the bank has undertaken a full consultation with staff and local communities.

Sandra White MSP said:

“Today’s news that Lloyds has seen profits rise over the last year forces us to question whether its programme of wholesale bank closures is really necessary.

“High street banks are hugely important to communities across Scotland – people and businesses depend on them to help keep local economies running.

“Communities and businesses should be able to access a face-to-face banking service, which is indispensable for many of my constituents.

“In more rural parts of Scotland, some branches earmarked for closure are literally the last bank in town.

“If the Bank of Scotland is interested in growing its customer base and building trust, it should abandon plans to close branches throughout Scotland, and keep branches at the heart of our communities.

“The SNP will continue our fight to save these banks. The Bank of Scotland, and others, should recognise there’s little sense in their plans to axe high street branches.”


ENDS

Notes:

Lloyds Banking Group reported a 13% increase in annual profits as it delivered a bumper pay-out for shareholders and said it will meet cost target earlier than expected. https://uk.finance.yahoo.com/news/lloyds-banking-group-return-4bn-074430864.html

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