Bank of France posts record profit, boosts risk provisions

PARIS (REUTERS) - The Bank of France nearly doubled its net profit last year to a record 3.146 billion euros (S$5 billion), it said on Thursday, boosted by European Central Bank measures to stabilise the euro zone's debt crisis.

It put aside a further 1.850 billion euros into a fund to provision for general risks, bringing the cushion to a total 5.66 billion euros.

"The Eurosystem's non-conventional monetary policy measures... largely explain the increase in the operating result," the central bank said in a statement.

The bank's pre-tax operating profit surged 43 per cent to 8.104 billion euros.

It cited in particular revenues from euro zone government bonds held since 2011 and an increase in bank deposits it held following two exceptional long-term lending operations with euro zone banks.

The French central bank said it would pay corporate tax of 3.110 billion euros for 2012 and that its dividend to the state would be set at a later date.

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