Thursday 30 April 2020 11:38 am

Societe Generale plunges to first quarter loss on bad loan provisions

Societe Generale posted a first-quarter loss today, blaming provisions for bad loans which jumped threefold as a response to the coronavirus crisis.

The French banking giant said it lost €326m (£283m) during the quarter, compared to a €686m profit last year.

Revenue fell 16.5 per cent to €5.17bn and underlying net income fell 90.8 per cent to €98m.

Provisions against loan losses increased to €820m in the first quarter from €264m a year earlier.

The bank said the increase was “in the context of the covid-19 crisis and some specific files, including two exceptional fraud files”.

Societe Generale’s revenue from structured products saw losses due to the cancellation of dividend payments of companies and due to counterparty defaults.

The bank said it confirmed its target to see a decrease in costs in 2020 and that there would be an additional cost reduction between €600m and €700m in 2020.

Chief executive Frederic Oudea said Societe Generale was confident in the “the robustness of our capital and risk profile”.

Societe Generale’s share price fell 5.6 per cent to €14.73.