NatWest restores shareholder payouts as profits bounce back, beating expectations | Business News
NatWest has restored shareholder dividends after swinging back into profit, significantly beating expectations.
The state-backed bank posted a pre-tax profit of £2.5bn for the six months to June, compared with a loss of £770m the year before.
It makes NatWest the latest bank to smash forecasts, following on from both Barclays and Lloyds earlier this week.
NatWest boss Alison Rose says loan defaults remain low
Analysts had expected NatWest to report a £1.8bn profit.
The bounce back was fuelled by the release of £707m from NatWest’s “rainy day” impairment fund – cash set aside to cover loans that faced turning bad last year during the economic chaos caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Most of this – £605m – came in the second quarter of the year.
NatWest said that it was releasing the money after its economic…