Credit Agricole restructured its complex business during the third quarter, enabling it to set a minimum dividend level for payment next year and improve its closely-watched regulatory capital buffers.
The French bank soundly beat net income estimates for the quarter, delivering 1.86 billion euros ($2.1 billion) against the 1.70 billion euros consensus recorded in a Reuters poll.
According to analysts at investment bank Jefferies, in a note published Tuesday morning: "The beat comes from across the board with a record quarter in large corporates and solid cost control across retail."
Having simplified its cross-shareholding ownership structure between its listed entity and co-operative parent banks, Credit Agricole said it now intends to recommend in May 2017 a dividend of 0.60 euros per share in relation to its 2016 results, equating to a 50 percent payout ratio. The lender says it does not expect to lower its 2017 dividend versus this year.