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Commerzbank: first dividend since 2007

Monday, August 03, 2015 - 01:40

Germany's Commerzbank doubles profits, rumours of an RBS share sale - and some Lloyds investors unhappy at the prospect of a retail share offer. Hayley Platt reports on the day's headlines from Europe's banking sector.

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It's been a busy week for Europe's banking sector. Now, Commerzbank's turn to report. Its Germany's second biggest bank, financing more than a third of the nation's exports. Net profit more than doubled in Q2 to 280 million euros, on a strong retail banking performance. And it's to pay the first dividend in eight years. Fidel Helmer is a trader on Germany's Dax. (SOUNDBITE) (German) HEAD TRADER AT HAUCK & AUFHAEUSER, FIDEL HELMER, SAYING: "That's a good sign and consumer banking seems to be flourishing. Though cost pressures remain significant, the supervisory board's contracts are to be lengthened, which is relatively good news." In Britain, investors in Lloyds bank are looking ahead to its next retail share offer. UK finance minister, George Osborne, has pledged to sell part of the government's remaining shares in the bank to ordinary Britons. But investors fear if they're sold at a significant discount it won't give best value for taxpayers. Alastair McCaig of IG says it's no surprise some are unhappy. (SOUNDBITE) (ENGLISH) MARKET ANALYST AT IG, ALASTAIR MCCAIG, SAYING: "The ability of the government to extrapolate themselves from Lloyds or another bank as quickly as possible must be incredibly attractive to George Osborne. It's a debate that whichever decision he takes will leave a multitude of people unhappy." That possible sale has fuelled speculation of another share sale - for Royal Bank of Scotland. It was bailed out by the UK government for almost £46 billion in 2008. It's been mooted that a sale could be announced this week. But with the government's holding worth around 31 billion pounds at the current share price, at a sharp loss to UK taxpayers.

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Commerzbank: first dividend since 2007

Monday, August 03, 2015 - 01:40