Italy's Creval strenghtens capital, bad loans up
MILAN May 13 (Reuters) - Italian mid-sized lender Credito Valtellinese posted on Tuesday a higher first-quarter net profit and also strengthened its capital base, even before an upcoming 400-million euro rights issue.
Creval, one of 15 Italian banks under scrutiny in a check up of lenders across the euro zone, said its net profit for the first three months of the year stood at 0.8 million euros, up from 0.3 million euros a year ago.
Revenues rose to 233 million euros from 190 million euros in the same period a year ago, and the net operating income was up 70 percent to 107 million euros.
The bank said its best-quality Common Equity Tier 1 capital was 9.2 percent at the end of March and would rise to 11.5 percent after the completion of the capital increase, scheduled for the first half of this year.
The bank had previously estimated a pro-forma Common Equity ratio of 10.9 percent after the share sale.
On a less positive note, net doubtful loans continued to rise, totalling 2.9 billion euros compared with 2.7 billion euros at the end of last year, as a two-year recession in Italy keeps taking its toll on banks' balance sheets even as the economy slowly improves.
Writedowns on problematic loans and other financial activities nearly doubled from a year earlier to 102 million euros. (Reporting by Silvia Aloisi, editing by Valentina Za)