Credit Agricole sees earnings soar after Greek bank sell off

Tim Wallace
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PROFITS soared at French lender Credit Agricole after the bank disposed of its troublesome Greek units, the bank’s first quarter results showed yesterday.

Net profits hit €469m (£396m) in the three-month period, up 51 per cent on the year. Losses of €907m in Greek bank Emporiki had dragged down earnings a year ago, but that has since been sold to Greece’s Alpha Bank.

Revenues at the group fell 26.2 per cent to €3.9bn while operating expenses fell 3.5 per cent to €2.9bn.

A revaluation of the group’s own debt and the application of new accounting rules knocked €262m from the total, but the restructuring of the lender outweighed those costs.

The corporate and investment banking arm performed particularly poorly as pre-tax profits fell 52.2 per cent to €307m.

Investors were disappointed with the results – despite the rise in group profits, the bank’s shares fell 1.58 per cent on the day.