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Danske Bank rakes in the billions

Despite unhappy customers, 2012 was a good year for Danske Bank.

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Danske Bank has released its 2012 accounts, reporting profit before tax of DKK 8.6 billion (EUR 1,148.5 million) and a net profit f DKK 4.7 billion. The result was generally in line with expectations and up DKK 3 billion (EUR 405.6 million) on its 2011 result.

“These are our best financial results since 2007 and it is definitely a step in the right direction,” says bank CEO Eivind Kolding.

“The earnings initiatives we have implemented are starting to produce results. The earnings and cost-reduction initiatives, together with improved conditions in the capital markets, have brought about improvements in 2012,” he adds, saying that the bank is ‘in full swing’ in implementing its new strategy to make sure that Danske Bank achieves its targets in 2015.

Apart from announcing it is to close a large number of branches, Dansk Bank has said that it will be introducing bank account subscriptions for customers under a certain level.

Total income for Danske Bank in 2012 was at DKK 47.7 billion (EUR 6,391.7 million), some 10 per cent up on 2011. Despite low interest rates in 012, the bank said group earning initiatives “improved conditions in the capital markets and cost-reduction initiatives led to improved financial results.”

Despite its profit for 2012, shareholders are unlikely to be paid dividends, however.

“The Board of Directors will recommend to the general meeting that no dividend be paid for 2012,” the report says.

It adds that net profit for 2013 is expected to range from DKK 7.5-10.0 billion (EUR 1,005-1,340 million) or a return on equity after tax of up to 7 per cent.

Results notwithstanding, a survey carried out by the Swedish Prospera analysis group into large corporate views of the main banks in the Nordic region, shows Danske Bank in fifth place behind SEB, Nordea, Citigroup and DNB.

The survey weights large corporate companies’ criteria for good banking, including issues such as client understanding, financial issues competence, service level, specialist coordination and strategic advice.

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