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Santander second-quarter net profit falls 18% on Popular costs, weak Britain

Santander second-quarter net profit falls 18% on Popular costs, weak Britain
FILE PHOTO: The logo of Santander bank is seen at a branch in Mexico City, Mexico April 12, 2019.REUTERS/Edgard Garrido -
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Edgard Garrido(Reuters)
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MADRID (Reuters) – Santander <SAN.MC> said on Tuesday second-quarter net profit fell 18% from a year earlier, due to one-off restructuring costs from its acquisition of troubled lender Banco Popular and a weak performance in Britain.

The euro zone’s largest bank in terms of market cap – which took over Banco Popular in June 2017 – reported a net profit of 1.39 billion euros ( £1.25 billion ) for the April to June period, topping analysts’ expectation of 1.29 billion euros in a Reuters poll.

Steady growth in Latin America business volumes, where it makes 46% of its earnings, was not enough to offset charges of 706 million euros, mainly in Spain.

Like its European rivals, Santander is struggling to lift earnings from loans in its home market with interest rates hovering at historic lows.

Net interest income, a measure of earnings on loans minus deposit costs, was 8.95 billion euros, up 5.6% from the second quarter of last year and 3.1% higher against the previous quarter due to a solid lending growth in Latin America.

Analysts had forecast a NII of 8.76 billion euros.

In Britain, its third-largest region, profit fell 41%, partly due to restructuring costs of 26 million euros and provisions of 80 million euros.

Santander ended the quarter with a core Tier-1 capital ratio, a closely watched measure of a bank’s strength, of 11.3%, compared with 11.23% in the previous quarter.

(Reporting By Jesús Aguado; Editing by Paul Day and Subhranshu Sahu)

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