Santander reports profit slip in first quarter
Spanish banking giant Santander reported a 4.8-percent drop in first-quarter net profits to 2.108 billion euros ($3.12 billion), but improved performance in Spain, it said on Thursday.
The bank described the results as "a more favourable tendency than the previous quarter of 2010, as much in terms of growth activity, margins and profits."
The figures were nevertheless slightly weaker than what seven analysts interviewed by Dow Jones Newswires had forecast: they had expected net profits of 2.17 billion euros.
But the initial from the Madrid stock market was positive, with Santander shares climing 1.64 percent to 8.614 euros shortly after opening in a market that was up 1.10 percent.
Santander, like other Spanish banks, is struggling with an economic downturn in Spain brought about by a collapse of the once booming property market in 2008.
© 2011 AFP