Nordea's Christian Clausen

Nordea banks Millions but Net Gains Plunge

One of Sweden's leading banks, Nordea AB reported a drop in fourth-quarter net profits of almost 30 percent on Wednesday, prompting an announcement that it would be launching a number of growth and cost-cutting iniatives.

Nordea posted a net profit of 592 million Euros in the three months upto the end of last year. That compares with a net profit of 781 million euros for the same period in 2008.

The bank said most of the fall was down to lower net gains and restructuring costs. Later this Nordea will outsource some of its IT development to India .

The bank still netted profits of 2.3 billion euros for the whole of 2009.

The head of Nordea, Christian Clausen said it had been a "one of the most challenging years for decades."

Profit margins for SEB were higher than expected for the fourth quarter. SEB reported operating profits above forecasts but reports show operating profits sliding to 564m kronor ($76 million) from the same quarter last year of 4.3 billion kronor.

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