Halifax gives a Lloyds lift

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The Halifax savings business continued to perform well and helped return Lloyds Banking Group to profit for the first time in three years.

Yesterday, the bank reported half-year profits of £2.1 billion - which follow a £456 loss last year.

The bank said Halifax Fixed Saver rates had recently increased by 0.45 per cent and the Junior ISA remains market leader with a 6 per cent rate.

Halifax now has over 80,000 cash JISA customers - 40 per cent of all cash JISAs.

Its Savers Prize Draw has now attracted over 1.6 million customer registrations and Halifax won the 2013 Moneyfacts Award for Best Fixed Rate Account Provider.

Halifax has also helped first time buyers with its recent Stamp Duty campaign which ran from April to July this year resulting in over 13,000 first time buyers getting their Stamp Duty paid by the Halifax.

During the first six months of 2013 over £3.75bn of new mortgate lending went to 33,000 first-time buyers.

Halifax has also announced plans to open branches in Scotland’s biggest cities.

The first branch will launch in Aberdeen’s Union Street by the end of this year, with new sites to open in Glasgow and Edinburgh by mid 2014.

The move will give customers in Scotland greater access to Halifax products.