Societe Generale profit jumps 18 percent

14th February 2007, Comments 0 comments

PARIS, Feb 14, 2007 (AFP) - French banking group Societe Generale reported on Thursday that net profit in 2006 had risen by 18.6 percent to 5.221 billion euros (6.831 billion dollars). The bank posted a 6.3-percent rise in fourth-quarter net profit to 1.179 billion euros, slightly below consensus estimates, with slower revenue growth in domestic retail banking and a rising cost-income ratio raising concerns over the outlook for 2007.

PARIS, Feb 14, 2007 (AFP) - French banking group Societe Generale reported on Thursday that net profit in 2006 had risen by 18.6 percent to 5.221 billion euros (6.831 billion dollars).
 
The bank posted a 6.3-percent rise in fourth-quarter net profit to 1.179 billion euros, slightly below consensus estimates, with slower revenue growth in domestic retail banking and a rising cost-income ratio raising concerns over the outlook for 2007.

Analyst estimates compiled by Thomson FirstCall had predicted net profit for 2006 at 5,209 bilion euros.

Societe Generale recommended an increase in its dividend of 16.3 percent to 5.20 euros.

But published fourth-quarter figures revealed a sharp slowdown in net profit growth compared to performance in the third quarter and first nine months of the year.

Top-line growth picked up in the final quarter of the year, with net banking income rising 11.5 percent to 5.671 billion euros, compared to 7.1 percent growth in the third quarter, the bank said in a statement.

But the French retail banking business saw revenue growth drop to 2.6 percent in the last quarter, compared with 7.3 percent in the third quarter and 10.3 percent for the first nine months, confirming a slowdown in domestic activities where the group faces strong pricing competition from rivals.

Corporate and investment banking put in a good performance, with 19.0 percent growth in revenues versus 1.7 percent in the third quarter, the compnay said, but analysts had been expecting better.

Copyright AFP

Subject: French news

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