Lloyds Q1 profit jumps as CEO Horta-Osorio heads for exit

LONDON, April 28 (Reuters) - Lloyds Banking Group reported better than expected profits for the first three months of the year, in outgoing Chief Executive António Horta-Osório’s last set of results at Britain’s biggest domestic bank.

Lloyds reported 1.9 billion pounds ($2.64 billion) pre-tax profit for the first quarter on Wednesday, compared to an average of analyst forecasts of 1.1 billion pounds. The bank had posted a narrow 74 million pound quarterly profit the prior year.

The bank’s profits were boosted by the release of a 459 million pound chunk of its provisions for expected bad loans due to the pandemic, with a net improvement of 323 million pounds, compared to a forecast of 357 million pounds of additional impairments.

Horta-Osório is leaving Lloyds after a decade in the role to become Chairman of crisis-hit Swiss bank Credit Suisse, with the appointment expected to be confirmed at an investor meeting on Friday. HSBC executive Charlie Nunn is set to join Lloyds as CEO in August.

$1 = 0.7205 pounds Reporting by Iain Withers and Lawrence White