Upbeat Credit Agricole says funding good

City A.M. Reporter
FRENCH bank Credit Agricole struck a confident tone on its financial firepower in the face of market “irrationality” about funding fears, lifting its battered stock by 4.8 per cent.

Bank stocks across Europe were buoyed by the comments from France’s number three bank by market value, which said dollar funding from the Middle East and Asia and its own available resources meant it could withstand a complete disappearance of funding from US money markets.

“[There is] a lot of volatility, a lot of nervousness...A lot of irrationality linked to perceptions of catastrophic situations,” chief executive Jean-Paul Chifflet said.

Quarterly earnings fell 10.6 per cent, weighed by well-flagged one-off charges and losses at Greek unit Emporiki.

Credit Agricole said second-quarter net profit fell to €339m (£299m), beating expectations of €193.3m according to a poll of nine analysts.

The bank warned last month it would take a hit of up to €850m linked to losses and one-off charges at Greek unit Emporiki as well as a charge linked to Greece’s European rescue package.