Santander Q4 net profit rises 8-fold, releases 750 million euros provisions

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In the quarter, Santander released 750 million euros ($845.25 million) in COVID-19 related provisions at a moment when some banks, mainly in the United States and Britain, are starting to reduce them due to improved economic conditions.

The euro zone second-biggest bank booked a net profit of 2.28 billion euros in the October to December period compared to a net profit of 277 million euros made in the same quarter in 2020 marked by hundreds of million euros in restructuring charges.

“Across all our regions and businesses, we are delivering solid and consistent top-line growth, with the U.S. and U.K. as standout performers in 2021, and Brazil and Chile the most profitable banks in their peer group,” Santander Chairman Ana Botin said in a statement.

The net profit was in line with forecasts by analysts polled by Reuters though was still below a 2.78 billion net profit booked in the fourth quarter of 2019 before the pandemic when the bank booked capital gains worth more than 700 million euros.

($1 = 0.8873 euros)