• Sweden's news in English

Handelsbanken scores record global profits

The Local · 4 Feb 2015, 13:37

Published: 04 Feb 2015 13:37 GMT+01:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit
The Swedish group's net profit grew by six percent to 15.8 billion kronor ($1.92 billion, 1.6 billion euros), the biggest in the bank's history, helped by higher revenues from Britain and The Netherlands.
The bank - which makes most of its profits in Sweden but has been bulking up its business abroad - reported strong growth in private banking customers as well as increased lending in Sweden and overseas.
"Operating profit in Britain rose by 41 percent to 1.6 billion kronor, chiefly due to higher net interest income and improved net fee and commission
income," the group reported.
Income from loans grew by one-third in Britain and by almost a quarter (23 percent) in The Netherlands but fell 0.3 percent in Sweden.
Overall household lending grew by eight percent to 860 billion kronor compared with corporate loans, which increased by one percent to 886 billion kronor.
Handelsbanken is one of the best capitalised banks in Europe with a steadily rising funding level and "Tier 1" capital - a measure of a bank's financial strength - which grew to 20.4 percent from 18.9 percent a year ago.
But its higher lending has also exposed it to higher risks, and fourth-quarter profits were hit by extremely low interest rates and greater losses from bad loans which saw a five percent drop in net profits to 3.34 billion kronor compared with the same period in 2013.
The bank said that falling interest rates resulted in an eight percent fall in net profits overall in the course of the year. Sweden's central bank cut its key interest rate to zero at the end of October.
The news follows a rough week few weeks for Swedish banking giants, who have made global headlines following a number of scandals about company perks.
Last month, one of Sweden's top businessmen Sverker Martin-Löf quit as chairman of Industrivärden, one of Sweden's leading investment companies, which has stakes in Handelsbanken, after claims of "excessive" use of private jets and taking family members on company trips to hunting lodges owned by a forestry and paper firm (SCA), which the investment company owns a huge chunk of.
Story continues below…
Industrivärden subsequently announced that that Anders Nyrén, who is currently chairman of the Swedish banking group Handelsbanken, would take over as its new chairman.
Meanwhile, Pär Boman, Handelsbanken's current CEO, is in the pipeline to take over as chairman of Handelsbanken, with an announcement expected before the firm's annual spring meeting.
Earlier this week it emerged that Christian Clausen, the CEO of Swedish banking giant Nordea was also under investigation for taking free hunting trips.

For more news from Sweden, join us on Facebook and Twitter.

The Local (news@thelocal.se)

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Today's headlines
Sweden can extend border controls, EU says
A police officer carrying out a check at Sweden's border with Denmark. Photo: Emil Langvad/TT

EU countries including Sweden should be granted permission to extend temporary border controls by a period of a further three months, the European Commission has decided.

Nobel Prizes
'I'd say he's arrogant but I'd be lying': Swedes on Bob Dylan
Bob Dylan performing in France. Photo: David Vincent/AP

Almost two weeks have passed since Bob Dylan was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature and he has yet to acknowledge the win. The Local asked Swedes what they think of the singer's silence.

Sweden cuts 2016 refugee forecast by thousands
A Swedish migration authority office in Stockholm. Photo: Maja Suslin/TT

The country has also slashed its prediction for 2017.

Swedish researchers plan new trucks for women drivers
File photo of trucks in Sweden. Photo: Thomas Johansson/TT

Could vehicles adapted for women attract more female truckers to the profession?

These stats show Swedish driving isn't so gender equal
File photo of a Swedish woman driving a car. Photo: Pontus Lundahl/TT

A new survey shows that few Swedish women get behind the wheel when driving with their male partner.

Revealed: Game of Thrones could be coming to Sweden
Game of Thrones cast members at the Emmy Awards in September. Photo: Jordan Strauss/AP

The producers of the hit show have asked for three rounds of location pictures of Swedish island Gotland.

Prime Minister to meet Swedish troops in Iraq
Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Löfven and his Kurdish counterpart Nechervan Barzani. Photo: Henrik Montgomery/TT

Sweden's Prime Minister Löfven is set to meet Swedish troops in Iraq on Tuesday.

Swedish politicians wage war on winter time
Soon it will look like this on your way home from work in Sweden. Photo: Anders Wiklund/TT

Should Sweden stick with summer time all year round?

'Don't turn the Pope into a global teddy bear'
Sweden's Queen Silvia and Princess Leonore visiting Pope Francis in the Vatican last year. Photo: Henrik Montgomery/TT

It's time to hold the Pope to account and make sure he turns his words about reform into action, argues a minister of the Swedish Church ahead of Pope Francis' visit to Sweden.

Löfven: 'Sweden will double its number of troops in Iraq'
Stefan Löfven and Haider al-Abadi during the visit on Monday. Photo: Henrik Montgomery/TT

Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Löfven has promised to double his country's number of troops in Iraq following a meeting with Iraqi counterpart Haider al-Abadi on Monday.

Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
Property of the week: Kungsholmen, Stockholm
Sponsored Article
This is Malmö: Football capital of Sweden
The Local Voices
'I simply don’t believe in nationality'
Why we're convinced Game of Thrones is based on Sweden
Blog updates

6 October

10 useful hjälpverb (The Swedish Teacher) »

"Hej! I think the so-called “hjalpverb” (auxiliary verbs in English) are a good way to get…" READ »


8 July

Editor’s blog, July 8th (The Local Sweden) »

"Hej readers, It has, as always, been a bizarre, serious and hilarious week in Sweden. You…" READ »

Sponsored Article
Where is the Swedish music industry heading?
People-watching: October 21st-23rd
Sponsored Article
Why you should 'grab a chair' on Stockholm's tech scene
Fury at plans that 'threaten the IB's survival' in Sweden
Analysis & Opinion
Are we just going to let half the country die?
Angry elk chases Swede up a lamp post
Sponsored Article
Stockholm: creating solutions to global challenges
The Local Voices
'Alienation in Sweden feels better: I find myself a stranger among scores of aliens'
Sponsored Article
Swedish for programmers: 'It changed my life'
People-watching: October 20th
The Local Voices
A layover at Qatar airport brought this Swedish-Kenyan couple together - now they're heading for marriage
Sponsored Article
Top 7 tips to help you learn Swedish
Swede punches clown that scared his grandmother
Sponsored Article
‘Extremism can't be defeated on the battlefield alone’
Fans throw flares and enter pitch in Swedish football riot
Could Swedish blood test solve 'Making a Murderer'?
Sponsored Article
Stockholm: creating solutions to global challenges
Property of the week: Linnéstaden, Gothenburg
Sponsored Article
Why you should 'grab a chair' on Stockholm's tech scene
Swedish school to build gender neutral changing room
Sponsored Article
Where is the Swedish music industry heading?
People-watching: October 14th-16th
Sponsored Article
One expat's strategy for making friends in Stockholm
Man in Sweden assaulted by clowns with broken bottle
Sponsored Article
Nordic fashion in focus at Stockholm University
Nobel Prize 2016: Literature
Watch the man who discovered Bob Dylan react to his Nobel Prize win
Record numbers emigrating from Sweden
People-watching: October 12th
The Local Voices
'Swedish startups should embrace newcomers' talents - there's nothing to fear'
How far right are the Sweden Democrats?
Property of the week: Triangeln, Malmö
Sweden unveils Europe's first elk hut
People-watching: October 7th-9th
The Local Voices
Syria's White Helmets: The Nobel Peace Prize would have meant a lot, but pulling a child from rubble is the greatest reward
jobs available