Lloyds Banking Group is considering selling its Australian asset finance and commercial lending operations, according to a report in the Wall Street Journal.

The US newspaper quotes unnamed sources "familiar with the matter" as saying the 40% UK government-owned bank has started formal sale proceedings for Capital Finance and BOS International.

Capital Finance offers a range of asset finance, aviation finance and consumer motor finance, and, together with BOS International, represents Au$9.4bn (€6.5bn) in assets under management.

The report speculates potential buyers for the Capital Finance unit would include the Australia-headquartered Macquarie Group, which already has a substantial asset finance business, or Chinese, Japanese and Canadian banks seeking to establish a footprint in the market.

The paper names Goldman Sachs as advising on the sale.

A spokesperson for Lloyds Banking Group told Leasing Life the company does not comment on speculation.