Madrid: The euro zone’s largest bank Santander posted a 5% fall in first quarter net profit on Wednesday to €2.096 billion ($2.73 billion), with provisions against loan losses eating into the bottom line.
Results beat forecasts according to a Reuters poll, where Santander was expected to post a 15.5% drop in net profit to €1.865 billion.
Santander said net interest revenue rose 22.2% to €6.23 billion, while operating profit rose 12% to €9.454 billion.
The results were presented in accordance with new Bank of Spain guidelines, which meant 2008 figures were restated.
Bad loans as a percentage of total lending rose to 2.49% at the end of the first quarter from 2.04% at the end of 2008