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Provident Financial's rights issue shares begin trading on LSE

The rights issue will be used to pay off almost £200mln in fines and to strengthen the balance sheet

Provident Financial
Provident's shares plunged in morning trading

Troubled doorstop lender Provident Financial PLC (LON:PFG) said the shares that make up its rights issue have started trading on the London Stock Exchange.

The company announced in February that it was launching a fully underwritten rights issue of more than 104mln new ordinary shares to raise about £331mln.

READ: Provident Financial launches big rights issue after £172mln credit card bill

The shares were admitted to trading on the LSE’s main market for listed securities and on the premium listing segment of the official list of the UK Listing Authority on Thursday at 8am.

Shares plunged 23.7% to 680p in morning trading.

Provident has said it would use the proceeds of its cash call to pay off almost £200mln in fines and to strengthen its balance sheet.

The Financial Conduct Authority has fined the group’s Vanquis Bank subsidiary £2mln and ordered it to pay £169mln to customers in compensation for mis-selling a repayment plan. Provident has also set aside £20mln for a second investigation into its car financing unit MoneyBarn.

The company posted a loss of £123mln for 2017 as it struggled to win back customers after a failed attempt to modernise led to an exodus of door-to-door sales staff.

The home credit division racked up a deficit of nearly £119mln last year following a disastrous decision to switch from commission-based agents to an in-house sales team, which sparked a serious of profit warnings followed by the two regulatory investigations.

Quick facts: Provident Financial

Price: 422.8 GBX

LSE:PFG
Market: LSE
Market Cap: £1.07 billion
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