A woman walks into a Bank of Cyprus branch in the capital, Nicosia
Nicosia - AFP
Bank of Cyprus, the island's largest lender, announced Friday it had made a 31 million euro ($42 billion) net profit in the first quarter after seven consecutive quarterly losses.
BoC's January-March gain compared with a loss of 103 million euros in the previous free months, and was the first by the troubled bank since the first quarter of 2012.
Group profit after tax and before restructuring costs and discontinued operations (profit from continuing operations) was 72 million euros, against a loss of 38 million in the 2013 fourth quarter.
The cost-to-income ratio was reduced to 36 percent from 41 percent in the last three months of 2013.
Customer deposits were down six percent to 14.06 billion euros from 14.97 billion on December 31, 2013.
In March 2013, Cyprus clinched a 10-billion-euro loan from the European Union and International Monetary Fund to bail out its troubled economy and oversized banking system.
That included closure of the island's second-largest bank, Laiki, and a 47.5 percent "haircut" on deposits above 100,000 euros at BoC.
The bank has since undergone major restructuring, which included absorbing the good assets of the former Laiki Bank.
"We have made significant progress in the implementation of our restructuring plan during the first quarter of 2014, and we continue to deliver against our strategic objectives," CEO John Patrick Hourican said in a statement.
"Loans in arrears for more than 90 days declined for the first time following sixteen consecutive quarterly increases," he added.