Metro Bank reports over £240m loss in first half of the year

Metro Bank has posted a pre-tax loss of £240.6 million in the first six months of this year.

The loss is a dramatic drop from the bank’s £3.4m profit reported for the same period last year.

The bank is the latest to reveal the cost of the coronavirus pandemic on its operations. Metro Bank reported that COVID-19 had cost it around £109m. Last week Virgin Money, the owner of Glasgow-based Clydesdale Bank, allocated an extra £42m to cover potential losses from an increase in bad COVID-19 loans. Last Thursday, Lloyds Banking Group posted a £602m pre-tax loss for the first half of this year, as the bank set aside £2.4 billion for bad loans.

Santander Group has suffered its largest loss in history with a 10.8bn euro (£9.8bn) loss for the first half of this year. Santander UK’s profits dropped by three quarters as the bank took a 12.6bn euros (£11.4bn) impairment for COVID-19 costs.

However, the bank reported that customer deposits increased 14% from the year before to reach £15.6bn.

Daniel Frumkin, Metro Bank chief executive, said: “These have been testing times but I’m very proud of the way Metro Bank has demonstrated the benefits of its community banking model, with our colleagues stepping up to support our customers and the local communities we serve.

“We entered 2020 at the start of our transformation journey and while the pandemic has weighed heavily on our financial performance, we’ve made early progress delivering against the strategic priorities set out in February.

“We’ve opened six new stores, continued to grow our number of customer accounts, built a new lending platform to deliver bounce back loans and announced the acquisition of RateSetter, which will help us meet more customer needs through unsecured lending whilst also demonstrating cost discipline.

“Our ambition to become the UK’s best community bank has never been more important and I’m confident we can build on this progress in the second half of the year.”

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