Bad debt weighs on Barclays' third-quarter profit
British bank Barclays, one of a handful of lenders to have avoided a government bailout, has blamed soaring bad debt charges for a 29 percent drop in net profit over the first nine months of the year to 2.73 billion pounds.
AFP - Barclays reported on Tuesday sharp falls for third-quarter net profits as the British banking group's bad debts soared.
Barclays said in a statement that profit after tax slumped 54 percent to 1.075 billion pounds (1.20 billion euros, 1.79 billion dollars) in the three months to September 30 compared with the outcome for the third quarter in 2008.
Net profits slumped 29 percent to 2.73 billion pounds in the first nine months of the year.
Barclays said bad debt charges surged 63 percent to 1.4 billion pounds in the third quarter and by 65 percent to 6.2 billion pounds in the first nine months.
Shrugging off the falls in profit, Barclays' chief executive John Varley said the group had "maintained strong income momentum in the third quarter," particularly at its investment banking arm Barclays Capital.
The British group has managed to avoid the massive government bailouts suffered by rivals Royal Bank of Scotland and Lloyds Banking Group.
Barclays last year won a seven-billion-pound capital injection largely backed by Abu Dhabi and Qatar, as it survived the credit crunch without government aid. But Abu Dhabi has since sold most of its holding.
In addition, Qatar's sovereign wealth fund, the Qatar Investment Authority, recent trimmed its Barclays stake.