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Natixis Second-Quarter Net Falls 22% on Lower Trading Sales

Aug. 2 (Bloomberg) -- Natixis SA, the investment-banking and asset-management unit of Groupe BPCE, said second-quarter profit dropped 22 percent as Europe’s debt crisis curbed trading revenue.

Net income fell to 394 million euros ($479 million) from 505 million euros a year earlier, the Paris-based bank said in a statement today. That beat the 347 million-euro average estimate of five analysts surveyed by Bloomberg.

Natixis and its parent, Groupe BPCE, are navigating Europe’s sovereign-debt crisis with smaller risks compared with French rivals. Chief Executive Officer Laurent Mignon said today on a call with reporters that, excluding currency effects, the bank has cut more than 6 billion euros of risk-weighted assets since the start of October, out of a planned 10 billion euros in asset reductions.

Natixis between the start of 2009 and mid-2011 already trimmed risk-weighted assets by at least 60 billion euros, the CEO said.

Natixis wants to reach a core capital ratio above 9 percent at the start of 2013 under Basel III rules, the company said today.

French banks had $334 billion euros in public and private debt holdings in Italy and $115 billion in Spain as of the end of March, Bank for International Settlements figures show. That’s the lion’s share of the $534 billion in holdings they had in the five troubled European economies.

To contact the reporter on this story: Stephen Taylor in Paris at staylor8@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Frank Connelly at fconnelly@bloomberg.net

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