The government has announced that over £19 billion of the £20.3 billion invested in Lloyds during the financial crisis has been recovered. The publication of these figures follows the sale of the latest tranche of shares in the Lloyds Banking Group through the latest trading plan launched in October 2016. The sale has resulted in a significant milestone as the government is no longer the largest shareholder in the bank. The government’s remaining stake has fallen to less than 4%.The Economic Secretary to the Treasury, Simon Kirby said:’Since the decision to sell the government’s stake in Lloyds we have now recovered over £19 billion for the taxpayer. Lloyds’ strong annual results show that we are in a good position to continue to reduce our shareholding and recover all of the money the tax-payer injected into the bank during the financial crisis.’It was announced last year that the government has shelved plans for the retail sale of Lloyds shares and would continue using a trading plan that involves gradually selling the remaining shares to institutional investors in the market over time. The trading plan is due to end in autumn 2017. All proceeds from the sales are used to reduce the national debt.