Hargreaves Lansdown's CEO, Ian Gorham, has labelled the government's sale of Lloyd's shares exclusively to institutional investors as "disgraceful and patronising".
Gorham (pictured), who plans to retire in 2017, has written a letter to the Prime Minister Theresa May explaining his disappointment that retail investors have been denied the opportunity to participate in the sale, in favour of large City institutions.
He added 374,000 investors had previously contacted them regarding the sale of the government's stake in the bank indicating the appetite for shares.
Last Friday, Chancellor Philip Hammond announced Lloyds' shares would not be made available to the public as a result of continued market volatility, causing the bank's equity price to fall 5% on the day.
Instead, a trading plan would be implemented where the remaining government shares are sold to institutional investors over the next 12 months.
Gorham said in his letter: "By withdrawing any retail participation in a potential Lloyds share offer, UK Financial Investments and the government has denied the people of this country any opportunity to invest in a share offer that would have been of great interest to them.
"This government has claimed it will represent working people and stand up to big institutions. Yet when the chance came to engage with working taxpayers willing to invest in our economy, it preferred to snub the small investor in favour of the City.
"Money from taxpaying, working people bailed out Lloyds. The public therefore owns any stake in it. Not giving them the opportunity to participate in its sale is disgraceful and patronising."
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