BUENOS AIRES Feb 14 Banco Macro
, one of Argentina's largest private banks,
reported a net profit of 426 million pesos ($87 million) in the
fourth quarter, up 23 percent from the same period a year
earlier and beating expectations.
A Reuters poll of five analysts had put the company's
quarterly net profit at a median of 390 million pesos, with
estimates ranging from 375 million to 435 million pesos.
The bank, which registered net earnings of 346 million pesos
in the last three months of 2011, said financing to the private
sector -- including commercial loans, credit cards and personal
loans -- had continued to grow in the fourth quarter.
In a statement to Buenos Aires stock exchange, Banco Macro
said it earned 1.49 billion pesos in full-year 2012, up 26
percent from the 1.18 billion peso profit reported in 2011.