July 28, 2014 / 10:12 AM / in 3 years

UPDATE 1-BCP's Polish bank posts record Q2 profit, upbeat on H2

* Q2 net up 22 pct year-on-year to 164 million zlotys

* Net profit in coming quarters seen at similar level

* Bank benefits from economic recovery (Adds details and quotes from news conference)

WARSAW, July 28 (Reuters) - Poland’s Bank Millennium posted a 22 percent rise in second-quarter net profit on Monday to the highest level for any quarter and forecast similar results in the second half as the economy accelerates.

Millennium, the Polish arm of Portugal’s BCP‘s, said net profit for the period stood at 164 million zlotys ($53.17 million), broadly in line with an average forecast of 166 million in a Reuters survey.

The bank attributed the profit jump to a lower cost of deposits, strong growth in consumer loans and higher commissions, mainly on investment products.

Millennium, the first major Polish bank to present second-quarter results, also benefited from accelerating economic growth that fuelled demand for credit in Poland.

“We believe that the trend is good,” Millennium Chief Executive Officer Joao Bras Jorge told a news conference on Monday after the bank released its results.

“In the next quarters of 2014, we expect similar level of net profit as in the second quarter. Maybe less, maybe more, but similar,” he said, speaking in English.

According to Reuters calculations, this would mean the bank may increase its full-year net profit by about 20 percent.

Previously, the bank had expected full-year net profit to rise by a high single-digit, or low double-digit, percentage from last year’s 536 million zlotys.

The second-quarter profit beat the previous record for any quarter excluding one-offs of 156.4 million zlotys posted in the first three months of this year.

Millennium shares were unchanged in early trading. The stock has gained 14 percent this year, outperforming the 1.4 percent rise in Poland’s broader banking sector index.

Polish lenders have focused on finding customers to take out cash loans that bring in high margins after other loan products took a hit when the central bank slashed interest rates to record low of 2.5 percent. ($1 = 3.0844 Polish Zlotys) (Reporting by Marcin Goclowski; editing by David Clarke)

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