Swiss bank Julius Baer says first-half profit up 7.9 percent

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Swiss private bank Julius Baer posted on Wednesday net profit growth of 7.9 percent for the first half, beating analysts' forecasts.

The Zurich-based group said net profit for the first six months of the year reached 261 million francs (192.3 million euros, 248.3 million dollars) compared to 241.9 million francs 12 months ago.

Analysts polled by economics news agency AWP had expected the bank to post around 251 million francs in net profit.

The bank continued to attract new deposits with net new money reaching 3.3 billion francs during the period.

It also improved its capital adequacy, with its BIS tier one ratio at 22.8 percent at the end of June, compared to 16.5 percent a year ago.

In comparison, Swiss banking giants UBS and Credit Suisse reported tier one ratios of about 16 percent at the end of the first quarter.

"We achieved a strong financial performance in the first six months of 2010, despite a continued difficult market environment," said Boris Collardi, chief executive officer of the group.

"We continue to aim at positioning Julius Baer and its offering at the leading edge of global wealth management," he added.

© 2010 AFP

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