December 10, 2008 / 5:39 PM / 9 years ago

UK court rejects attempt to block Lloyds-HBOS deal

LONDON, Dec 10 (Reuters) - A last-ditch attempt to block the takeover of HBOS Plc HBOS.L by Lloyds TSB (LLOY.L) was dismissed by a court on Wednesday, clearing the way for HBOS investors to vote on the bank takeover in two days.

The Competition Appeal Tribunal (CAT) rejected the case from the Merger Action Group (MAG), a group of businessmen, bank customers and shareholders opposed to the takeover.

MAG was challenging the UK government’s decision to sidestep competition laws to allow the deal.

    HBOS welcomed the decision.

    “This has always been an unnecessary and unhelpful distraction, especially given our proposed transaction is in the interests of financial stability across the UK,” said HBOS spokesman Shane O‘Riordain.

    HBOS shareholders are expected to approve the deal at a vote on Friday. Over 96 percent of Lloyds investors have backed the deal, which will complete in mid-January if approved. [nL9197013]

    Reporting by Steve Slater; Editing by Hans Peters

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