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Lloyds Banking Group expects profit this year

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[March 19, 2010]  LONDON (AP) -- Britain's Lloyds Banking Group PLC said Friday it expects to report a profit this year as trading has so far been strong and provisions for bad assets are not as large as previously forecast.

In a brief statement, the part-nationalized bank said that in the first 10 weeks of the year net interest margin has come in line with guidance and income growth has been good.

The trading update did not include any figures.

Last month, Lloyds reported a net profit of 2.8 billion pounds ($4.26 billion) for 2009 though its pretax loss of 6.3 billion pounds was slightly worse than expected. At that time, the bank said it believed impairments for bad loans and other assets, which amounted to 24 billion pounds in 2009, had peaked.

Impairments in the second half of 2009 were 21 percent lower than in the first half, and Lloyds had said it expected a similar pace of improvement this year.

Lloyds Banking Group was formed last year when Lloyds TSB took over Halifax/Bank of Scotland. Largely because of HBOS' shaky lending portfolio, the new company was bailed out by the government, which now holds a 41 percent stake.


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[Associated Press]

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