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BPI reported profits of 210 million Euros in the first quarter of this year, against losses of 122 million Euros in the first three months of 2017, the bank said on Thursday.
“We had a good first quarter,” the bank’s chief executive Pablo Forero said at a press conference in Oporto, Portugal.
In Portugal, the bank made a profit of 118 million Euros, 58 million of that from recurring results and 60 million Euros from the non-recurring sale of Viacer (a company that owns 56 percent of Super Bock) to the Violas group.
Meanwhile, Angola and Mozambique contributed EUR 91 million from operations in which it has minority positions: EUR 86 million with the Angolan BFA – Banco de Fomento de Angola and EUR 5 million with the Mozambican BCI.
Between January and March, BPI did business worth EUR 346 million, seven times more than in the first quarter of 2017.
Net interest income grew 3.8 percent to EUR 101.5 million, helped by lower deposit costs and growth in the Portuguese loan portfolio, BPI said. Commissions increased 11.9 percent to EUR 69 million , with the bank reporting that commissions on a comparable basis (without the BPI Alternative Fund, which has not been consolidated in the accounts since March 2017) rose 8.1 percent.
Bank fees (without insurance intermediation and asset management) rose 13 percent to EUR 50.1 million euros. At the press conference, Forero said that the main reason for commissions rising was “higher customer activity”, not changes in precariousness.
The bank also achieved EUR 66.5 million in financial operations, well above the EUR 7.4 million achieved in the first three months of 2017.
In terms of expenditure, the cost of infrastructure was EUR 114 million, down 7 percent from the first quarter of 2017, with staff costs falling by 17 percent to EUR 63.6 million.
The bank ended March with 4,896 employees, 34 fewer than in December 2017. Forero said on Friday that this fall represented employees who had already reached agreement on termination with the bank last year, and that 80 people would leave BPI in the same way this year.
As for branches, after the closing of two in the first quarter the bank now has 431, as well as 39 investment centres and 35 business centres.
The general administrative expenses rose 11 percent to EUR 45.2 million, which the bank justifies with investments in technologies and legal costs, among others “necessary to execute the synergies plan” between BPI and CaixaBank.
Looking at the consolidated balance sheet, at the end of March 2018, loans to customers was EUR 22,085 million, down more than EUR 600 million from the value registered in March 2017.
Customer deposits fell by more than EUR 1.4 million Euros (6.5 percent) to 20.967 million.
The bank said, however, that in Portugal customer deposits rose by EUR 590 million to EUR 19.625 million and that corporate loans rose 3.5 percent (EUR 251 million ) to EUR 7,420 million and that the production of new credit mortgages (mainly for house purchase) rose 35 percent (EUR 326 million).
BPI also indicated that, in the first quarter, it had impairment reversals (provisions for potential losses) of 7.7 million Euros and closed March with a non performing performance (NPE) of 4,6 percent, against 5.1 percent in December.
Finally, the bank has solvency ratios CET1 of 11.4% and total ratio of 13.2%.
When questioned by journalists at the presentation of results, the president of the bank declined to comment on what is happening at Montepio.
About the Novo Banco, he said only that BPI contributed 14 million Euros per year to the Resolution Fund (which created the New Bank, following the resolution of BES) and that it was already known that would will be maintained for a long time.
“If things go well, payments will end in 2040 if they go badly in 2050 and 2051,” he said, considering that “they will do better than the market expects”.
Following a takeover bid at the beginning of 2017, BPI has been 84.5 percent owned by the Spanish group Caixa Bank, with insurance company Allianz owning 8.4 percent and the remaining 7 percent dispersed between several other shareholders.Source: Lusa