Wednesday 30 October 2019 7:33 am

UK charges drag down profit at Santander

Santander’s net profit slumped during the third-quarter as one-off charges in the UK blighted Europe’s biggest lender.

The Spanish bank reported attributable profit of €501m (£432m) in the last three months, diving 75 per cent when compared to the same quarter a year ago.

Read more: UK banking sector coughs up £40bn in tax

Brexit uncertainty and regulatory pressures have dented Santander’s UK business, which has posted a €1.5bn charge related to goodwill.

The bank also set aside more than €100m for the mis-selling of payment protection insurance (PPI).

A solid performance in Latin America helped offset the charges, with net profit in Brazil jumping by almost 25 per cent.

Nathan Bostock, boss of the firm’s UK business, said that the “uncertain economic environment looks set to continue for some time”.

Statutory profit before tax tumbled 43 per cent year-on-year to £785m, with Bostock citing “ongoing competitive income pressure, additional PPI costs as well as transformation programme investment” for the drop.

Excluding charges, profit in the first nine months of 2019 edged up two per cent year-on-year to €6.18bn.

Read more: Banks struggle with last-minute PPI surge

Banco Santander executive chairman Ana Botín said in a statement: “We have achieved the strongest underlying performance in almost a decade this quarter, building on the momentum from the first half of the year, despite some significant external headwinds.”

In the group’s home market of Spain, underlying profit was per cent higher year-on-year at €1.18bn, mainly due to lower costs.