ATHENS Aug 30 Alpha Bank, Greece's
third-largest lender by assets, remained profitable in the
first half, thanks to an accounting gain on its acquisition of
Emporiki and lower funding costs.
Including a goodwill write-back on Emporiki booked in the
first quarter, Alpha posted net profit of 2.732 billion euros
($3.61 billion), above market expectations. Analysts polled by
Reuters were expecting profit of 2.64 billion euros on average.
Excluding the 2.6 billion euro write-back, the bank earned
126.7 million euros in the first half from a loss of 462 million
in the same period last year.
Provisions for loan impairments rose 37 percent year-on-year
to 984 million euros, the bank said.
(Reporting by George Georgiopoulos)