Spanish bank Santander smashed profit expectations for the third quarter driven by robust lending activity in its mortgage unit.
The lender pulled in more than £1.4bn in pre-tax profits in the year to September, up nearly 400 per cent. Over the same period last year, profits were just £299m.
A red hot UK housing market, engineered by a mixture of the stamp duty holiday and the pandemic shifting consumers’ housing preferences, lifted Santander’s mortgage lending.
The lender’s mortgage book swelled £5.2bn, while customer deposits jumped £1.5bn.
Nathan Bostock, chief executive of Santander, said: “We have built on our position as the UK’s third largest retail mortgage provider, delivering £5.2 billion of net mortgage growth in a competitive market as well as an increase in customer deposits.”
“Despite a more positive economic environment, conditions remain uncertain and a number of factors could impact the pace of recovery.’
“While the pandemic’s trajectory over the winter remains unclear, I believe we are well positioned to grow and to support our customers over the years ahead, with strong capital and liquidity and proven balance sheet resilience.“
Santander’s core equity tier ratio, a measure of the strength of a bank’s balance sheet, came in at 16.6 per cent for the firs first nine months of the year.
Customer lending edged back slightly to £209bn for the year to September.
The strong third quarter clip comes after fellow banking giants Barclays, HSBC, JPMorgan and Goldman Sachs all posted robust earnings over the past fortnight.