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BNP Paribas posts better than expected profit levels

By Ashley Norris

Strong French economy boosts BNP Paribas Q3 profits

BNP Paribas posts better than expected profit levels

French bank BNP Paribas SA has surprised analysts by reporting higher than expected quarterly profit levels.

Economic growth in France, coupled with a strong return from its investment banking sector, boosted its performance. Even so its quarterly profit dropped by 8.8 per cent.

Although profit levels are down, this bucks the trend of other European banks. Barclays and HSBC, among others, have warned analysts that they don't expect to meet their current profit targets.

The bank’s net income for the third quarter was €1.94bn (£1.67bn, $2.16 bn), compared with €2.12bn for the same period 12 months ago.

“The business of BNP Paribas was up this quarter in all the operating divisions in a context where economic growth slowed down but still remained positive in Europe, in particular in France,” the bank said.

Yet, similar to other European banks, BNP Paribas had already reduced 2020 profitability targets and undertaken a restructuring of its investment banking sector earlier in the year.

The bank’s most successful sectors proved to be in corporate and institutional banking where profits rose by 13.5 per cent in the third quarter. It suggests that this has been driven by Forex trading and credit rises.

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