Danske Bank predicts hike in net profits this year
Danske Bank set a net profit growth forecast for 2015 which is higher than last year's result, hoping its cost controls and a reorganisation across Northern Europe will offset low interest rates in the region.
Denmark's largest bank by market capitalisation reported a smaller-than-expected pre-tax loss, reflecting higher income from its insurance business and income from increased customer activity. Losses at the bank's Irish arm shrunk around 15 pc to €201.5m and the bank said corporate and institutional business here delivered a strong performance in 2014. It quit retail banking here in 2013.
The bank launched a 5bn Danish crown (€670m) buyback scheme, proposed a higher than expected dividend and said it would pay more of its net profit in the future in dividends; news which helped push shares up 1.3pc to 174.6 crowns each.
Danske Bank said it expected to earn more than 14bn crowns in net profit this year compared to the 12.9bn crowns it earned in 2014 before a goodwill impairment charge of 9bn crowns. It revised targets for return on equity to above 12.5pc by 2018.