Intesa SanPaolo earnings slide on weaker trading, charges

MILAN – The CEO of Italy’s second-largest bank, Intesa SanPaolo, said Friday that its contribution to a fund supporting weaker lenders in the country will be capped at the 845 million euros ($966 million) already pledged.

Carlo Messina told an analyst conference call after first-quarter earnings were announced that “we are not the saviours of the Italian banking system.”

Intesa, Italy’s second-largest bank, booked a 136 million euro charge in the first quarter to cover its contributions to the restructuring fund, which helped four small lenders. Its contributions to date have totalled 300 million euros.

The bank said those charges and weaker trading earnings pushed its net income down 25 per cent to 806 million euros ($923 million) in the quarter ending March 31.

The bank resolution fund is raising 3.6 billion euros to restructure Banca Marche, CariFerrari, CariChieti and Banca Etruria, hampered by bad loans.

First quarter profits on trading dropped 60 per cent to 228 million euros, while net fees and commissions fell 5.5 per cent to 1.71 billion euros.

Provisions for bad loans dropped to 694 million euros, the lowest since 2011, reflecting an improved credit market. The bank said it had loaned 10 billion euros during the quarter, mostly to families and small- and medium-size businesses.