BRUSSELS, Feb 22 (Reuters) - Belgian financial group KBC posted a net profit above expectations on Thursday, boosted by solid performances in the Czech Republic and its international business, while its Belgian home market was weaker.
KBC said that for the fourth quarter of 2017 net interest income in its Belgian unit fell because of lower dealing room income, reinvestment yields and pressure on margins for commercial loans.
In the Czech Republic, interest income rose and deposits as well as loans were higher compared to last year. Net fee and commission income also rose.
Overall, net profit fell by 42 percent in the fourth quarter to 399 million euros ($489.9 million), but was above the 364 million expected in a Reuters poll of nine analysts.
For 2017 as a whole, the net result was 6 percent higher than in 2016.
KBC said it would pay a dividend of 3 euros per share for the 2017 financial year, including 1 euro already paid out in November. This was in line with market expectations. ($1 = 0.8145 euros) (Reporting by Robert-Jan Bartunek; editing by Philip Blenkinsop)