Cattles asks for government aid

Troubled lender Cattles pleaded with the government last week to include secured lenders in its loan guarantee scheme to help kick-start its lending operation.

At the moment the scheme is only open to lenders that are authorised deposit-takers with more than £25bn of eligible assets.

Cattles has abandoned plans to apply for a banking licence from the Financial Services Authority until the terms of its renegotiation of £635m of its bank facilities are known. It had hoped to secure about £1bn in retail deposits by 2010 after gaining a licence.

Cattles says if the government agrees to guarantee a percentage of its loans it could reverse plans to shed 1,000 jobs and cut back lending.