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France’s Credit Agricole beats profit target a year early

Credit Agricole SA beat its 2022 profit target a year early as lower costs for troubled loans and rising revenues across business lines boosted fourth-quarter results beyond consensus, France’s second-biggest listed bank said on Thursday.

The lender said it would present a new strategic plan for 2025 on June 22 after underlying net income came in at about 5.4 billion euros for 2021, well above its 5-billion target for this year.

Other key 2022 targets, such as a cost-to-income ratio below 60% and a return on tangible equity of more than 11% were met, with 2021 figures standing at 57.8% and 13.1% respectively.

The group, which has a policy of paying half of profits to shareholders, said it would propose a 2021 dividend of 1.05 euro per share which includes a 20 cents catch-up for the 2019 dividend which could not be paid.

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