ABN Amro private banking unit has posted a net profit of €44m for the third quarter (Q3) of 2019.
This is a 43% slump from the previous year figure of €76m.
The division’s operating profit before tax for the quarter ended 30 September 2019 stood at €63m, down 34% from €95m in the corresponding quarter of 2018.
Operating income at the private banking arm dipped 9% year-on-year to €295m. Operating expenses of €223m were 3% lower than a year ago, driven by a fall in personnel expenses.
The unit’s cost/income ratio at the end of September 2019 was 75.5%, versus 70.4% last year.
Client assets were flat at €195.3bn, as positive market conditions this year offset last year’s market downturn.
At a group level, the Dutch lender’s net profit plummeted 24% to €558m from €738m over the period.
The banking group’s operating income decreased 9% to €2.1bn from €2.32bn.
ABN Amro CEO Kees van Dijkhuizen said: “Net profit in Q3 2019 was EUR 558 million, reflecting continued solid operational performance and moderate impairments, offset by low other income (including private equity gains). The cost/income ratio was 59.4%. Our capital position remains strong, with a CET1 ratio of 18.2% and we are well positioned to manage the transition through TRIM and Basel IV.
“The interest rate environment remains challenging. If rates stay low, it will take longer to reach our cost/income target of 56–58%. We already charge negative rates to CIB clients and the largest clients in Commercial and Private Banking.
“We have decided that we will not charge negative rates on deposits below EUR 100,000. This commitment means that around 95% of our clients, representing approximately 40% of our deposit base, will be safeguarded from negative rates.”
At the same time, ABN Amro said that it has refined its strategy to detect financial crime and is leveraging the review of an independent expert for the purpose.
The move comes after the bank’s revelations of being probed for money laundering in the Netherlands. The bank said that it is cooperating with the authorities.