Santander bank plans to sell shares in British subsidiary next year

Alfredo Sáez, the Managing Director of Santander bank, announced today that its British subsidiary is likely to be floated on the stock market sometime during the first half of 2011. He said that there were no plans for anymore takeovers following the purchase of a third Polish entity and the offices of the Royal Banks of Scotland in the United Kingdom. He made assurances that there was no need to increase the bank’s capital and said that he was confident that by the end of the year the bank would enjoy solvency (core capital) 9% above the required level and above the average for the banking sector.

As far as Santander’s results are concerned it made a net profit of 6.080 million euros between January and September this year which is 9.8% less than the 6,740 million euros it made during the same period in 2009. Furthermore the bank has warned shareholders that it will not obtain the results forecast in June this year that saw potentials profit of between 9,500 and 10,000 million euros.

Despite this the bank has guaranteed that it will maintain its dividend at 0.60 euros per share.

It was confirmed that Santander Group, headed by Emilio Botín, would have made 6,522 million euros if it had not been for the impact of the new regulations introduced by the Bank of Spain.

The rate of non-payment for 2010 was reported by the bank to be 3.42% at the end of September which is slightly above the rate of 3.03% recorded a year ago. The results announced by Santander were not received well by the market and 15 minutes after markets opened toay the bank’s shares fell by 1.7% although they picked up again later.

Once again the geographic diversification of Santander bank has led to its profits being significantly reduced. Its profits for Spain, Portugal and Europe, not including the United Kingdom, which represent 37% of its total profits, fell by 20%.

However, the profits of its subsidiaries in Latin America (principally Brazil) accounting for 42% of its total profits increased by 25%.

The results announced by Santander which is the leading bank in Spain are typical for those presented by the rest of the sector. Yesterday Spain’s second largest bank, BBVA, published results which showed losses of 12.2% in its profits for the third quarter of 2010.

Spain’s banks are still facing difficulties due to their involvement in the housing sector. Yesterday the Bank of Spain highlighted the problems faced by Spanish banks which still have up to 180,800 million euros tied up in investments in ‘bricks and mortar’. Out of this sum Santander has admitted that it still has 15,500 million euros tied up in investments in the housing sector.