BNP Paribas’s beats profit expectations despite poor trading arm

BNP Paribas beat analyst expectations in the second quarter as growth in its international arm made up for a drag from foreign exchange effects and a poor fixed income trading performance.

Pre-tax income at Frances biggest bank fell slightly year-on-year for the second quarter, from €3.46bn (£3.1bn) to €3.45bn, although among the banks operating divisions it fell by four per cent.

Net income attributable to shareholders was marginally down compared to 2017, at €2.39bn, although without exceptional items it rose by 0.7 per cent.

Revenues totalled €11.2bn, up by 2.5 per cent year-on-year. The bank blamed the continued low interest rate environment for a dip in revenues in its domestic markets business.

Meanwhile, the corporate and investment bank unit saw revenues fall by 6.8 per cent mainly because of foreign exchange effects. The banks fixed income revenues fell by 17.4 per cent.

However, the banks international financial services arm reported revenues up by 8.7 per cent as the bank gained new clients.

The groups operating expenses rose by 4.2 per cent compared to the second quarter of 2017, hitting €7.4bn, although it said it had made another €149m in cost savings during the quarter.

Jean-Laurent Bonnafe said: “BNP Paribas delivered a solid performance this quarter”.

“Revenues, driven by the specialised businesses, increased in the context of economic growth in Europe despite an unfavourable foreign exchange effect and less favourable financial markets compared to the second quarter 2017.

“The group is actively implementing its digital transformation and new customer experiences roll-out plan.”

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