February 12, 2019 / 7:42 PM / 6 months ago

UPDATE 1-French bank Natixis' Q4 profits shrink after Asian derivatives losses

(Adds CEO comment)

PARIS, Feb 12 (Reuters) - Natixis’ fourth quarter net profits were halved after the French bank booked a 260 million euros ($294 million) loss on Asian derivatives during the period.

Natixis, which is controlled by unlisted French cooperative bank BPCE, reported a net profit of 252 million euros in the fourth quarter out of revenues of 2.25 billion euros.

The bank had previously warned that Asian equity derivatives - mainly from Korea - that had turned sour would hit its bottom line for the quarter.

Natixis’s CEO Francois Riahi said the blow was “an isolated incident”. His bank stopped selling those financial products, he added.

A brutal market downturn in the fourth quarter hit most European banks during the period. Larger French banks BNP Paribas and Societe Generale both reported declines in overall profit caused by the adverse market environment. Credit Agricole SA is due to report earnings later this week.

Natixis said its investment and corporate banking arm posted a net loss of 49 million euros in the fourth quarter, compared with a 231 million euro profit in the same period in 2017.

Natixis proposed a 0.78 euros dividend, which includes a special 0.48 euro dividend.

The bank kept its broader financial targets, including a 60 percent dividend payout ratio over the 2018-2020 period.

$1 = 0.8839 euros Reporting by Inti Landauro and Matthieu Protard; Editing by Sudip Kar-Gupta and John Irish

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