LONDON -- Lloyds Banking Group PLC (LYG) is embroiled in a dispute with Financial Services Authority over the resumption of its first dividend payments since being bailed out four years ago, the Sunday Times reported.
The U.K. watchdog believes the bank, which is 41% state-owned, should hoard capital to protect it from a euro-zone break-up rather than hand dividends to investors, the Sunday Times reported. These views were aired last month when Lloyds met the regulators to discuss dividend resumption, the paper said.
Lloyds' management has long stated that the bank will resume dividend payments when the regulatory landscape is clear and the bank can afford it.
"We have always said we would like to recommence progressive dividend payments, when the financial position of the Group and market conditions permit, and after regulatory capital requirements are defined and prudently met," a spokesman for the group said. "We work productively with all regulators in that respect."
Lloyds hopes to announce a dividend payment in 2013.
A spokesman for the FSA was not immediately available for comment.
Newspaper Website: http://www.timesonline.co.uk
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