Santander earns 1,840 million euros in the first quarter of 2019, 10% less than in the same period of 2018. While the benefit in the US, Brazil, and Mexico maintain the positive momentum, restructuring costs in the United Kingdom and Poland, and the sale of assets in Spain slow down the positive evolution of the bank.
"Ordinary profit grew in seven of our ten main markets. The United States was once again the fastest growing, with attributable profit up 46% compared to the same period in 2018, while Brazil and Mexico maintain the positive momentum of recent years. These results have been achieved in a difficult operational context, especially in the United Kingdom and Europe." - Ana Botín, president of Santander.
Bad exercise in Europe
In Spain, profits fell 11% to 403 million euros. Here the market loses by the annual comparison. And it is that in the first quarter of 2018 the benefit was favored by debt sales and more favorable capital markets. The reduction in wholesale banking activity led to a drop in fee income of 8.7%, despite a favorable evolution of the business in general.
In the United Kingdom, where Brexit has been affecting business for a while, the bad news continues. The profit fell 36%, to 205 million euros, after endowing 66 million euros for restructuring costs.
The good news in America
In Brazil, the main market of Santander, the profit continues to grow consistently, with an increase of 7%, to 724 million euros. As he explains, "thanks to the focus that the bank maintained on customer bonding and satisfaction, in addition to controlling costs".
In Mexico, the benefit was 206 million euros, 18% more than a year ago. There the bank increased the customers linked 28% and digital customers, 57%. It should be recalled that on April 12, the group announced the intention to acquire the 25% stake in Santander Mexico that was held by minority shareholders through a share exchange offer.
The United States was the big winner of the quarter. In these three months, Santander registered "a very positive year", with an increase in attributable profit of 46%, to 182 million euros, thanks to "a positive evolution of the main lines of business".