World Economy

UBS Annual Net Profit Halves

UBS Annual Net Profit HalvesUBS Annual Net Profit Halves

Switzerland’s UBS bank’s fourth-quarter net profit fell from the equivalent period in 2015 but still surpassed analyst expectations with the bank on Friday blaming macroeconomics and geopolitics for negatively impacting client sentiment and trading volumes.

Switzerland’s largest bank delivered 738 million Swiss francs ($737.3 million) of fourth-quarter net profit, coming in short of last year’s comparable 949 million Swiss francs, but clearly ahead of a Reuters consensus forecast of 339 million Swiss francs. The higher figure delivered during the same quarter of 2015 had benefited from a net tax benefit of 715 million francs, CNBC reported.

The results on Friday meant that total net profit for 2016 came in at 3.3 million Swiss francs, a near halving from the 6.2 billion reported last year. On Friday, the company confirmed an unchanged ordinary dividend of 0.60 Swiss francs per share for 2016, in line with expectations.

Speaking to CNBC on Friday, UBS Chief Executive Sergio Ermotti said sentiment surrounding the economy and financial markets had improved since the election of President Donald Trump, particularly in the US.

“We have data pointing at clients and investors being more optimistic and ready to be constructive about the situation,” he said at the company’s headquarters in Zurich.

“They are really looking for concrete actions by the new administration in the US to then go into investing in the markets but what I think is much more important is also potentially investing in their underlying businesses which is really going to boost the economy,” the CEO added.


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