Commerzbank′s painful restructuring gains traction | Business| Economy and finance news from a German perspective | DW | 07.11.2013
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Commerzbank's painful restructuring gains traction

Germany's second-largest lender, Commerzbank, has said it's making good progress in its current restructuring drive to overcome the aftermath of the financial crisis. It ended the third quarter in the black.

Commerzbank reported Thursday its third-quarter bottom-line earnings rose as its deep post-crisis restructuring was beginning to bear fruit.

The country's second-biggest lender of Deutsche Bank said net profit jumped by 15 percent to 77 million euros ($104 million) in the period from July to September.

The bank hastened to add, though, that operating profit was halved to 103 million euros in the same period year-on-year as the lender was forced to increase provisions for loan losses.

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"One year after the presentation of our strategic agenda we have already achieved very much," CEO Martin Blessing said in a statement. "We have further increased capital ratios, reduced costs, lowered risks and made out non-strategic portfolio smaller."

Analysts noted that Commerzbank earned even more than Deutsche Bank which had to make billion of euros in additional provisions for litigation risks.

Commerzbank said it had made big strides in developing its retail banking division as part of its strategic reorientation after the global financial crisis. The lender said it acquired an additional 82,000 private clients in the third quarter, bringing the total of new customers to 180,000 in the first nine month of 2013.

hg/rg (Reuters, AFP)

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