Lloyds To Sell Halifax Estate Agency

(Reuters) – LLOYDS BANKING GROUP said it agreed to sell its loss-making Halifax estate agency business to LSL Property Services for one pound following a strategic review.

The sale is expected to result in the loss of about 360 full time roles.

Following the transaction, which is expected to complete in January 2010, LSL will become the second-largest estate agency network in the UK. It will rebrand the 218 branches into its Your Move, Reeds Rains and InterCounty brands.

Lloyds, Britain’s largest mortgage lender, said the affect on its accounts is not expected to be material.

The bank, which is 43% owned by the government after receiving a taxpayer-funded bailout last year, is expected to sell a string of assets to address concerns about its reliance on state aid.

In a separate statement, LSL said it has performed ahead of management’s expectations since July 1 amid a slightly improving housing market but that it remains cautious about the outlook for 2010.

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