Doctors advised Horta-Osorio to step back
The chief executive of Lloyds Banking Group is taking a temporary leave of absence on medical advice.
Antonio Horta-Osorio is understood to be suffering from stress and fatigue due to overwork.
However he is expected to return to his role before the end of the year after a six to eight week break.
The board of the bank met today to discuss who will lead the business in the interim with finance director Tim Tookey becoming stand in chief executive.
Tookey is leaving Lloyds next year for a post in the insurance industry.
Horta-Osorio arrived from Santander in March this year and has been implementing a major restructuring programme.
Measures include cutting 15,000 jobs, drawing back from international markets and the sale of 630 retail branches.
The so called Project Verde sale has only had one bidder but Lloyds - which has considered floating the branches as a separate entity - is committed to making a decision in December.
It is not clear if Horta-Osorio will play any part in that process now.
In an email sent to staff at the bank Sir Win Bischoff, chairman of the Group, said: "We wish Ant£nio a speedy recovery and look forward to seeing him back at work before the end of the year.
"It is important that everyone continues to focus on business as usual.
"We have a very strong management team and a clear strategy. The bank has made significant progress this year and I know all our people continue to make a great contribution every day and will continue to do so."