Earlier this year, BP raised $5bn in new loans to bolster its capital position following the Gulf oil spill. Various banks were involved, including BNP Paribas, Standard Chartered, SocGen and RBS. Lloyds was not.
But last night a Lloyds banker told me that his bank had come very close to getting in on the act too. Apparently the option made it all the way up to Eric Daniels, the chief exec (right), before being rejected.
At the time Lloyds’ decision seemed prudent. While the loan was in the early stages of discussion, the well remain unplugged, and even after it was plugged, the liabilities could have been unlimited.