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DANSKE Bank Ireland has reported a loss before tax of €8.8m for the three months to the end of March. It said its overall performance was in line with expectations.

The figure of €8.8m compares with a loss before tax of €184.3m the same time last year and pre-tax losses of €15m in the last quarter of 2012.

The big yearly drop in pre-tax losses is due to the fact that Danske Bank Ireland is now reporting only "core business'', which encompasses personal and business banking.

The bank plans to sell a large part of its troubled Irish loan-book by the end of next year to cut loan losses.

Dankse's total Irish loan-book currently stands at about 66 billion krone (€8.85bn).