Santander earnings

MADRID: Santander, Europe’s biggest bank by capitalisation, said on Wednesday its net profit edged up three per cent last year to 5.97 billion euros (6.5 billion euros), held back by provisions. In particular it put aside 600 million euros to cover possible costs of mis-selling insurance in Britain. Without the exceptional charges, net profit would have climbed 12.9 per cent to 6.57 billion euros, but this still missed the 6.92 billion expected by analysts surveyed by financial data provider Factset. Net interest income, a key measure of profitability from lending operations, rose by 8.9 per cent to 32.19 billion euros.