Barclays shares rise 3% on profits surge

barclays-building-2012-700x450.jpgBarclays shares have risen 3 per cent this morning as the UK high street lender reports higher than expected profits results.

In its annual results, published today, the bank reports a sharp rise in pre-tax profit to £3.2bn for 2016 up from £1.1bn in 2015. Profit in the Wealth business rose 2 per cent over the period to 31 December 2016.

The rise in profits led to an increase in its core capital ratio, which rose rose to 12.4 per cent against analysts’ expectations of 11.8 per cent.

Barclays group chief executive officer James Staley says: “The progress on our priorities resulted in organic profit generation which strengthened our CET1 capital ratio by 100 basis points in 2016 to 12.4 per cent. This puts us well on track to meet our end-state target and we are well positioned to absorb headwinds over the next few years. Certain legacy conduct issues remain and we intend to make further progress on them.”

Thanking his colleagues, he adds: “In 2017, we can begin to move on from the restructuring of Barclays, shifting our focus solely to the future, and in particular to how we can generate attractive, sustainable, and distributable returns for our shareholders.”

Revenue at the bank increased 7 per cent to £22bn as the bank continued to cut costs, which fell to £13.4bn from £15bn in 2015. The bank also halved its share dividend to 3p from 6.5p.