Paris: French bank BNP Paribas said Tuesday its net profit rose 6.6% in the second quarter as its retail and investment banking divisons succeeded in attracting new business amid the continued global economic downturn.
The Paris-based bank reported net profit of €1.6 billion ($2.3 billion) in the three months ended 30 June, up from €1.5 billion a year earlier.
BNP Paribas, Europe’s largest financial institution by deposits, said its Tier 1 ratio, seen as a key measure of a bank’s financial health, was 9.3% on 30 June, up from 8.8% on 31 March.
In a statement, BNP Paribas chief executive Baudoin Prot said that the bank is well positioned to take on the challenges of the current economic environment.
The bank’s revenue rose nearly 33% in the quarter to €10 billion, thanks in part to the acquition of Belgian lender Fortis Bank. Excluding this acquisition, BNP Paribas revenue rose 20% in the quarter.
BNP Paribas credited its second quarter performance to the very good operating performance of all divisions despite a high cost of risk, which remained around the same level as the first quarter.
The corporate and investment banking division, the bank’s largest and most profitable unit, saw operating income rise to €1.14 billion in the quarter from €510 million a year ealier, when investment banking profits were hammered by the global financial crisis.
The bank said its fixed income unit’s profits were extremely strong in the quarter due to investor demand and a continued favorable market environment.
BNP Paribas shares rose nearly 50% on the back of a broad rally in equity markets in the second quarter. So far this year, the shares are up 8%.