The news of Lloyds’ chief executive Antonio Horta-Osorio having to step down temporarily from his role has sent shockwaves amongst the financial markets and could have a negative impact on the tax payer.
Horta-Osorio has been forced to take a leave of absence on medical advice after months spent restoring the pride of the bank, claiming that he is too exhausted to currently continue.
In what was a darkening mood for the taxpayer owned bank, Lloyds have been under severe pressure to undergo a strategic overhaul in the form of a £1.5 billion branch sale process, an accelerated shrinkage of the bank’s balance sheet, calls to cut pay throughout the company and thousands of planned redundancies in recent years.
The news of the temporary resignation of Horta-Osorio is only likely to increase further woe amongst the semi nationalised lender. Targets to get the bank back on track after a dismal three years appear to have now stagnated, with a number of critics now claiming that Lloyds could be set for further delays in their rebuilding process.
It is unclear whether Horta-Osorio will revert back to his current role despite Lloyds claiming that their chief executive will be back in action in the New Year. If Horta-Osorio decides not to return at a time where the taxpayer bank is struggling at a time of economic hardship globally and the potential risk of another recession, the bank could come under further scrutiny and difficulty in the months and years ahead.