European Markets

Greece's Alpha Bank posts Q3 losses on higher loan provisions

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ATHENS, Nov 30 (Reuters) - Alpha Bank (ACBr.AT), one of Greece's four largest banks, swung to a net loss in the third quarter after a profit in the previous quarter, on higher loan-loss provisions.

Alpha Bank posted net losses of 171.3 million euros ($194.68 million) in July-to September versus a net profit of 95.7 million euros in the second quarter.

Alpha, which is 9% owned by Greece's HFSF bank rescue fund, said loan impairment provisions stood at 437 million euros in the third quarter versus 127.9 million in the second quarter mainly due to the transactions of two bad loan portfolios, "Cosmos" and "Orbit".

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"The Cosmos portfolio has been reclassified as held for sale following the agreement reached with Davidson Kempner, enabling a very meaningful reduction of our Non Performing Exposures," Chief Executive Vassilis Psaltis said in a statement.

Alpha Bank and Davidson Kempner signed earlier this year an agreement for the securitisation of 3.4 billion euros of bad loans knows as the Cosmos project.

The group's non-performing exposures (NPEs) ratio stood at 16.6% at the end of September, down from 23,8% at the end of the second quarter.

"(We are) On track to reach 13% by year-end and a single-digit by mid-2022," Psaltis said.

The bank's Core Equity Tier 1 capital ratio stood at 13.9% with net interest income falling 14.2% quarter on quarter to 318.5 million euros.

($1 = 0.8799 euros)

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Reporting by Lefteris Papadimas; editing by David Evans

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