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Lloyds Banking Group to close 15 branches - spokeswoman

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Lloyds Banking Group to close 15 branches - spokeswoman
FILE PHOTO - A woman uses a cash machine at a Lloyds Bank branch in central London, Britain February 25, 2016. REUTERS/Paul Hackett   -   Copyright  Paul Hackett(Reuters)
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LONDON (Reuters) – Lloyds Banking Group <LLOY.L> is to close a further 15 branches between January and March 2019, a spokeswoman said on Wednesday, a week after the British bank axed 380 jobs.

The lender’s efforts to adapt to declining footfall in branches and the growing use of mobile and digital banking have seen it increasingly focus on technology and tech-savvy staff at the expense of bricks-and-mortar and manual processes.

“All branches announced for closure will have a Post Office less than half-a-mile away, so customers can still access their banking locally,” the spokeswoman said in a statement.

Accord, a union, said up to 23 jobs will be lost as a result of the cuts, but it expects that could be managed without compulsory redundancy, in the same way as the bank’s previous branch closures.

Across the industry, banks are looking to technology to cut costs and help them compete with upstart financial technology firms that enjoy growing popularity.

Plans to shutter branches and axe roles have however sparked criticism from lawmakers and campaigners.

(Reporting by Emma Rumney, Editing by Lawrence White)

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