London: British bank Barclays Plc beat expectations with a 44% rise in half-year profit as bad debts dropped sharply and it made a big accounting gain, offsetting a second-quarter slowdown at its investment bank. Barclays said pretax profit in the six months to the end of June were £3.95 billion ($6.3 billion), above an average forecast of £3.4 billion from six analysts polled by Thomson Reuters. It included an 851 million pound gain on the value of its own credit.
Bad debts fell by 32% to £3.08 billion, despite a jump in losses on corporate loans in Spain.
Earnings at Barclays Capital, the investment bank arm headed by Bob Diamond, more than trebled from a year ago to £3.4 billion. Excluding credit moves BarCap’s profit rose 31% to £2.55 billion.
Top-line income in the second quarter was £3.28 billion, down 15% from the previous quarter.