Eurozone banks earn more from lending
Eurozone banks increased their net interest income in the first nine months of last year, despite incessant complaints that negative central bank rates are wiping out their most basic form of income, data from the European Central Bank showed on Wednesday.
The ECB cut its deposit rate to minus 0.5 percent in September but has long argued that banks are net beneficiaries of its super-easy policy as higher lending volumes more than offset the drag from low rates.
Banks supervised by the ECB had net interest income of 202.9 billion euros in the first three quarters, up from 194.4 billion a year earlier, the highest nine-month figure since the ECB started supervision in late 2014.
Banks in Germany, the bloc’s biggest economy, fared the worst in the period and their combined net profit was on a par with lenders from Greece, a much smaller economy that was saved from collapse in recent years with three European rescue packages.
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