Spain's Popular beats forecasts with 2013 profit jump

MADRID Fri Jan 31, 2014 2:15am EST

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MADRID Jan 31 (Reuters) - Spain's Banco Popular on Friday reported a 2013 net profit of 325 million euros ($441 million), beating analysts forecasts as it recovered from steep losses in 2012.

Like Spanish peers, Popular was helped in 2013 by lower provisions against soured property loans. These pushed it to post a 2.46 billion euro loss the previous year.

Analysts had expected Popular to post a 2013 net profit of 261 million euros, according to a Reuters poll.

Popular's net interest income - its earnings from loans, net of funding costs - fell 10 percent to 2.4 billion euros, broadly in line with forecasts. ($1 = 0.7373 euros) (Reporting by Sarah White, Editing by Sonya Dowsett)

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