Bankia expects to close the year with a profit of between 800 and 900 million euros
Bankia expects to close the year with a profit that will range between 800 and 900 million euros, clearly exceeding the 509 million obtained in 2013 (608 million if the subordinated loans granted by BFA to Bankia are not taken into account) and calculates that it may end 2015 with a net profit of more than 1,000 million.
For this, the entity will take advantage of the “comparative advantage” with the rest of the sector in terms of efficiency, which will be “more relevant” in an environment marked by low interest rates, close to 0%, as reported to Europa Press in financial sources.
The sources explain that the nationalized bank manages the same volume of business two years ago, but with some 1,000 fewer offices and with a staff reduction of around 6,000 employees. Bankia is currently facing a return to normality, framed by a low interest rate environment in the euro zone that will hinder the banking business in the next two years.
Thus, sources expect that revenues in the financial sector in general tend to “flatten” in 2015 and 2016, but trust that the BFA-Bankia group will reach the goal of net profit of 3,100 million accumulated between 2013 and 2015.
This ability to generate profits reinforces Bankia’s idea of distributing its first dividend in history next year, charged to the profits of 2014. However, sources indicate that the decision on the ‘pay out’ will be made at the beginning of the year. 2015, once the accounts for the current year are closed and the ECB, current sole supervisor, issues its recommendations on the shareholder remuneration policy.
The nationalized bank, currently involved in about 62% by the Fund for Orderly Bank Restructuring (FROB) through its parent BFA, has already returned 1,304 million of total aid for an amount of 22,424 million, after a first placement (7.5%) of the state participation.
Another frob sale when the market regains strength .
The sources rule out a new sale of the FROB until the first months of 2015, since the “decaffeinated” reaction of investors to the stress tests and the “little pulse” of the market do not advise this operation in the remainder of the year.
“From January to May, the market is expected to have more strength”, they explain from the sector, and they imply that “the stock market uncertainty derived from the postponement of Aena’s flotation has not helped” the stock market. In addition, large fund managers usually close positions at the end of November, which reduces the possibility of another divestment before next year.
In any case, the formula that the Ministry of Economy will foreseeably choose to reduce its participation in Bankia will be again through an accelerated placement, since “the bond issuance in shares is no longer on the table”. The sources clarify that by means of this last modality the maximum amount to be placed would be limited to around 1,000 million euros.
Lloyds as reference .
Within the process of returning public aid, the sources distinguish between ING and Bankia. The Dutch bank completed last week the reimbursement of public money for restructuring five years after its rescue, with a return to the Netherlands of 3.5 billion in interest and premiums.
“Bankia takes Lloyds more as a reference,” the sources say, recalling that the British state still retains 25% of the entity nationalized in 2008, after reducing its participation through several placements.
The Government has on several occasions expressed its confidence that the nationalized entity will return “all” of the public aid destined for its reorganization. However, he prefers not to set a deadline for this reimbursement, given that the State will gradually lose its participation.