Banco Santander achieved an underlying profit of €1,908 million in the first half of 2020, down 48%, due to an increase in loan-loss provisions attributable to the covid-19 pandemic. While the pandemic has had a significant impact on customer activity, the underlying performance of the business was strong, supported by resilient customer revenues, higher than expected cost reductions, robust credit quality and good organic capital generation.
The board of directors intends to propose a payment of a scrip dividend (payable in new shares) equivalent to 10 cents per share for 2019.
Net interest income and customer revenues remained stable year-on-year, at €16.2 billion and €21.3 billion, respectively, driven by revenue growth in Latin America, Santander Corporate & Investment Banking, and Wealth Management & Insurance. This, combined with good cost control, resulted in net operating income growth of 2% to €11.9 billion.
The group is ahead of its cost saving plan, with the European region achieving more than €300 million in efficiencies in the first half of the year, representing 75% of the bank’s 2020 target. Operating expenses fell by 2% or 5% in real terms (i.e. excluding inflation).
The board of directors intends to propose a payment of a scrip dividend (payable in new shares) equivalent to 10 cents per share for 2019. The board is committed to applying a full cash dividend policy as soon as market conditions normalise, subject to regulatory approvals and guidance. In line with this commitment, the bank has accrued six basis points of CET1 capital in the quarter for a potential cash dividend against 2020 results. This is in addition to the scrip dividend for 2019 mentioned above.
The group has continued to provide significant financial support to customers throughout the pandemic, extending an average of €1.6 billion every day in new lending during the second quarter and providing more than five million customers with payment holidays. Santander also ensured that its core banking services continued to operate normally while keeping employees and customers safe. Around 90% of branches are currently open and substantially all of the banks 40,000 ATMs are operating normally.
Here you can see and download high resolution photos from the first quarter results presentation.
Here you can watch and download videos from the first quarter results presentation.