Adds background in paragraphs 3 and 5, CEO quote in paragraph 4
HELSINKI, Oct 19 (Reuters) – Nordea NDAFI.HE, the Nordic region’s biggest bank, reported on Thursday a rise in third-quarter operating profit largely in line with expectations, helped by high interest rates.
Operating profit at the Finnish lender rose to 1.73 billion euros ($1.82 billion) against a year-earlier 1.28 billion and a mean forecast in a Refinitiv poll of analysts of 1.74 billion.
Soaring inflation over the past year has seen central banks drastically raise key interest rates, boosting interest income for lenders in the region.
“We must all be prepared for interest rates normalising above the levels we have seen during the past ten years, and consequently asset prices and investment opportunities need to adapt to a new reality,” Nordea CEO Frank Vang-Jensen said in a statement.
Swedish rival Handelsbanken SHBa.ST on Wednesday reported a record third-quarter profit driven by growth in interest income and minimal credit losses, sending its shares soaring.
($1 = 0.9494 euros)
(Reporting by Anne Kauranen; Editing by Anna Ringstrom)
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