STOCKHOLM Feb 9 Banking group Swedbank
(SWEDa.ST) posted a fourth-quarter operating loss that was
bigger than market expectations on Tuesday but said a profit for
the full year in 2010 was "feasible".
The operating loss was 1.67 billion Swedish crowns ($224.3
million), against a forecast for a loss of 1.35 billion crowns
seen in a Reuters poll of analysts. That compared with a 2.4
billion crown profit a year ago.
Loan losses -- which include provisions for the possible
future non-payment of loans -- were 5.0 billion crowns. That was
smaller than expectations and compared with a loss of 6.1
billion in the third quarter.
The bank has suffered an operating loss for four straight
quarters, hurt by deep recession in the Baltic region where it
is heavily exposed.