Santander posts 4.9 pct fall in Q1 net profit on Brazilian gloom

Banco Santander, the euro zone's biggest bank, on Wednesday posted a 4.9 percent fall in first-quarter net profit from a year earlier, hit by a deepening recession in Brazil, its second-biggest market.

A Santander bank branch in New York.
Scott Mlyn | CNBC
A Santander bank branch in New York.

Santander, which makes the biggest chunk of its profit in Britain and Brazil, reported net profit of 1.63 billion euros ($1.84 billion), beating analysts' forecasts of a 12.5 percent decline in a Reuters poll.

Net interest income, a measure of earnings on loans minus deposit costs, was 7.62 billion euros, down 5.2 percent from a year ago, mirroring pressure on margins experienced by other Spanish banks.

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