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Short-sellers raise bets against Metro Bank after chairman steps down

Short-sellers have been raising bets against Metro Bank PLC (LON:MTRO) as the lender seeks to rebuild its reputation after an accounting scandal. The bank is the ninth most-shorted company on the London Stock Exchange with 7.6% of its shares held by four short sellers.

Metro Bank -

Short-sellers have been raising bets against Metro Bank PLC (LON:MTRO) as the lender seeks to rebuild its reputation after an accounting scandal earlier this year.

The bank is the ninth most-shorted company on the London Stock Exchange with 7.6% of its shares held by four short sellers, according to the ShortTracker website.

Last week London-based ENA investment Capital raised its short position against Metro by 0.09% to 1.71% while Canadian asset manager Connor Clark & Lunn upped its bets against the shares by 0.1% to 1.00%.

Marshall Wace and Odey Asset Management hold short positions of 1.46% and 3.4%.

The increased bets against Metro come in the wake of the bank announcing that Vernon Hill will step down as chairman.

Last month the company said the bank has “now reached a size and scale where it is appropriate to appoint an independent chair”, adding that the change would bring its board “in-line with best practice corporate governance guidelines”. 

Hill will stay on as a non-executive director and president after he steps down as chairman.

The news of his departure was made alongside the group’s first-half results, which showed pre-tax profit fell to £3.4mln from £20.8mln a year ago as customers withdrew £2bn of deposits over the period following a misreporting scandal.

In January, the group admitted that that many commercial loans had been incorrectly classified in an accounting error, leading to the loss of a small number of large customers.

Metro Bank turned to investors last month to raise £375mln from the sale of new shares to bolster its balance sheet and increase its loans book.

Quick facts: Metro Bank

Price: 197 GBX

AIM:MTRO
Market: AIM
Market Cap: £339.67 m
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