Santander Earnings Drop by a Tenth as Restructuring Costs Hit

Banco Santander reported a 10.4 per cent drop in first-quarter net earnings, as restructuring costs in UK and Poland and high inflation in Argentina trimmed the bank’s performance, the Financial Times reported. The eurozone’s largest bank by market capitalisation said total net profit dropped to €1.84bn for the three months to March, down from €2.05bn in 2018. Analysts polled by Bloomberg had expected net earnings of €1.83bn for the quarter. Without foreign currency headwinds, the bank said profit for the quarter would have dropped 7.7 per cent. Brazil was again the largest contributor to group earnings, with 29 per cent of total underlying profit, followed by Spain with 16 per cent, Santander Consumer Finance with 13 per cent and the UK with 11 per cent. “Underlying profit has increased in seven of our 10 core markets, with the US our fastest-growing market again,” said Ana Botín, executive chairman of the Spanish-based bank, “while Brazil and Mexico are maintaining the positive momentum established in recent years.” Read more