Commerzbank 2019 Net Profit Down 25.3%

German lender Commerzbank AG (CRZBY.PK) posted full year 2019 net profit attributable to shareholders of 644 million euros, down 25.3 percent from 862 million euros in the prior year. Earnings per share decreased 26.1 percent to 0.51 euros from 0.69 euros last year.

The latest period's results include first restructuring charge of 101 million euros for personnel reduction and a higher tax rate.

Operating profit for the year increased 1.2 percent to 1.26 billion euros from 1.24 billion euros in the prior year.

Group revenues increased to 8.64 billion euros from 8.57 billion euros in the prior year, reflecting healthy client business. Revenues excluding exceptional items declined 0.3 percent to 8.62 billion euros from 8.65 billion euros a year ago.

"We ended the financial year 2019 with a better operating profit than expected. Together with the strong capital ratio, this provides us with a good starting position for 2020," said Martin Zielke, Chairman of the Board of Managing Directors of Commerzbank.

The company's board of Managing Directors has proposed a dividend of 15 cents per share for 2019 based on previous year's pay-out ratio.

Looking ahead to fiscal 2020, Commerzbank said it will continue to pursue its growth strategy and targets underlying revenues for the year at least at the level of 2019.

The company confirmed its target for a cost base of 6.7 billion euros plus up to 0.2 billion euros cost to achieve IT investments as part of the Commerzbank 5.0 agenda.

The bank plans to maintain a dividend pay-out ratio for 2020 at a level comparable to 2019.

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