BBVA eyes up US expansion but shuns UK

City A.M. Reporter
BBVA, Spain&rsquo;s second-largest bank, is eyeing the US for expansion as it strengthens its capital base ahead of expected tougher regulation, its chief executive said yesterday.<br /><br />&ldquo;Our expansion strategy has not changed. We are clearly focusing on the US,&rdquo; Angel Cano said alongside the bank&rsquo;s nine-month results.<br /><br />Europe&rsquo;s sixth-largest bank, a relative winner from the financial crisis which has needed no state aid, recently swooped on Texan Guaranty Financial in a deal arranged and underwritten by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC).<br /><br />&ldquo;We are looking at the FDIC for any opportunities which could arise,&rdquo; Cano said.<br /><br />However, the bank has no immediate merger plans on the table and is not looking at the British market, he said, following the results, which left the share price little moved.<br /><br />Nine-month net profit totalled &euro;4.18bn (&pound;2.8bn), in line with analysts&rsquo; forecasts for &euro;4.11bn but down 3.3 per cent from the same period last year due to lower loan volumes and squeezed margins in the economic slowdown.