August 1, 2018 / 6:56 AM / a year ago

Finland's largest lender OP sees 24 pct drop in H1 profit

HELSINKI, Aug 1 (Reuters) - Finland’s largest bank, OP Financial Group reported a 24 percent drop in first-half pretax profit due to rising costs and lower investment income, but it said it expected a better performance for the full-year than previously forecast.

The lender said pretax profit in January to June period fell by 24 percent year on year to 425 million euros ($496.23 million).

“This earnings decrease came from lower net investment income and other operating income as well as higher expenses,” the company said in a statement on Wednesday.

But OP said that it expects a better than expected performance for the full year, with pretax profit now expected to remain at around 2017’s level of 1.1 billion euros, having previously warned it would fall.

It said the improvement was down to one-off items relating to the company’s pension scheme. ($1 = 0.8565 euros) (Reporting by Agnieszka Barteczko, editing by Louise Heavens)

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