Give me a profit, or a loss, whichever you think appropriate

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This is from Lloyds Banking Group’s half year statement:

The number the press has talked about is a loss of £4 bn (well, £3.957 bn, but that will do).

But did Lloyds actually lose this?

Or did it lose £7.785 bn?

Or did it make a profit of £5.95 bn as the auditors would have said?

After tax even a profit of £7.153 bn?

That’s a range of almost £15 bn.

And the farce that is modern accounting is revealed.