Santander profits rise on favorable business in United Kingdom

4. Santander
File photo taken on May 11, 2018 shows office of Santander bank on 3rd Avenue in New York City. (Photo: AFP)
MADRID — Spanish banking giant Banco Santander said Wednesday that its profits grew strongly in the third quarter of this year, thanks in particular to a good performance in Britain and the United States.اضافة اعلان

Santander said in a statement that it booked a bottom-line net profit of 2.17 billion euros in the period from July to September, an increase of 24 percent over the same period a year earlier. 

The figure above the two billion euros forecast by analysts quizzed by FactSet.
“We delivered solid top line growth across all of our regions and businesses again this quarter,” said chief executive Ana Botin.

“Our performance in the US and the UK were particularly strong, underscoring the effectiveness of our strategy in these important markets.”

In the third quarter of 2020, Spain’s biggest bank had booked net profit of 1.75 billion euros, returning to the black after the coronavirus pandemic had pushed it into a loss of more than 11 billion euros in the preceding three months.

In Britain, which accounts for around one fifth of the bank’s earnings, underlying net profit was up 13 percent compared to the previous quarter, thanks to a rise in mortgage lending and “an acceleration in cost reduction”.
Santander said it had closed 111 branches in Britain this year as customers continued a shift to online banking.

In the US, Santander’s underlying net profit almost doubled against the same quarter last year as the lender benefitted from economic stimulus policies.
“The auto business, in particular, is ideally positioned to capture significant growth from the sustained demand for used vehicles,” the bank said.

CEO Botin said that Santander had managed to attract “more than one million customers” in the third quarter, while loans and deposits had increased by four percent and six percent respectively on a 12-month basis.

Looking ahead, “we are well on track to significantly outperform our profitability target for 2021,” Botin said. 

“We remain confident of reaching our 13-15 percent medium-term profitability target thanks to the progress we have made to date (and) an improved outlook.” 

In the full year of 2020, Santander booked a net loss of 8.7 billion euros, after it was forced to write down the value of several of its branches, particularly in the UK. 

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