British Bank Barclays reported net profits of 9.4 billion pounds Tuesday, beating analyst expectations and a doubling on last year’s figures, largely thanks to the sale of its investment arm BGI.
AFP - Barclays on Tuesday said that net profits at the British bank more than doubled to almost 9.4 billion pounds in 2009, largely thanks to the sale of its investment arm.
A 49-percent jump in bad loans weighed on underlying earnings, Barclays said in an earnings statement, adding that the group's chief executive and president had declined a bonus for a second year running amid "intense public interest and concern" over bankers' pay.
Barclays said that net profits surged 114 percent to 9.393 billion pounds (10.807 billion euros, 14.756 billion dollars) last year after the bank had sold Barclays Global Investors (BGI) to US asset manager BlackRock in late 2009.
Net profit had stood at 4.382 billion pounds in 2008.
"The Board considers that the performance of Barclays has been strong in 2009," the bank said in its earnings statement.
"However, out of consideration of the continued impact of the economic downturn on many clients, customers and shareholders, combined with the fact that banks and bankers' pay remain matters of intense public interest and concern, both (chief executive John Varley and president Bob Diamond) have advised the Board that they wish to decline any such awards for the second successive year."
Barclays said that annual pre-tax profit was up 92 percent at 11.642 billion pounds. That beat analyst expectations of profit totalling 11.31 billion pounds, according to Dow Jones Newswires.
However excluding a 6.331 billion-pound gain from the sale of BGI, profit before tax stood at 5.311 billion pounds, down 13 percent compared with 2008.
Impairment charges for the year jumped 49 percent to 8.07 billion pounds. However the figure was below the bank's own estimate of nine billion pounds.
Despite the hike in debts written-off, Barclays has successfully avoided state control, unlike rival British banks that were beaten by the global financial crisis and bailed out by the taxpayer.
Barclays had in 2008 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, while Qatar's sovereign wealth fund, the Qatar Investment Authority, has trimmed its Barclays stake.
Date created : 2010-02-16