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Co-op Bank posts £610m loss

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The Co-operative Bank has reported a pre-tax loss of £610m for 2015, more than doubling its losses of £264m a year ago.

In its annual results published today, conduct and legal risk charges increased to £193m from £101.2m for the year due to higher provisions for missold payment protection insurance.

To reduce costs for the year, the bank closed 58 branches in 2015, and said it will close other 54 in 2016. Overall the bank cut 18 per cent of its staff to 4,470 people.

The measures led to a £76m reduction in costs year-on-year but costs remained high at £492m in 2015.

Co-op Bank almost collapsed in 2013, after bad property loans left a staggering £1.5bn capital shortfall. It lost 38,000 customers the year after.

However, the bank said the actions taken to improve its finances made it much “stronger” than a year ago.

The Co-op Bank chief executive Niall Booker says: “In 2015 we have been successful in improving capital resilience, reducing costs and strengthening the performance of the core bank and the expected widening of our financial loss compared with 2014, due to legacy issues we have known about and highlighted for some time, should not distract from the considerable progress made in turning the bank around.”

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