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ECB’s Lagarde Says Bank Payout Cap Could Lift End September

  • Bank watchdog signals ECB will still take prudent approach
  • Nordea, Intesa, BBVA most attractive in JPMorgan analysis
Christine Lagarde

Christine Lagarde

Photographer: Oliver Matthys/AFP/Getty Images

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European banks could see a cap on dividends and share buybacks lifted at the end of September, according to European Central Bank President Christine Lagarde, offering the clearest signal yet that the industry will be able to boost returns for long-suffering shareholders.

The European Systemic Risk Board could allow its call for restrictions to lapse if economic and financial sector conditions do not deteriorate materially, Lagarde told European lawmakers on Thursday in her capacity as head of that institution. “The improved economic outlook on the back of rapid progress in vaccination campaigns has reduced the probability of severe scenarios,” she said.