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Job cuts help Abbey increase profits by 31%.

Abbey posted a 31% hike in profits yesterday after slashing around 1,800 jobs as part of a cost-cutting drive. The bank, which is owned by Spain's Banco Santander Central Hispano, reported net profits of pounds 499m in the nine months to September 30.

Santander banked net profits of pounds 3.2bn - a rise of 28% - which it said was due to cost cutting at Abbey and lending revenues from Latin America.

The Spanish firm has cut 5,800 jobs since its pounds 9bn takeover of Abbey two years ago, including 1,800 this year.

Abbey chief executive Antonio Horta-Osorio said, 'Revenue growth is being sustained through increased sales capacity and sales productivity and we are on track to meet our pounds 300m cost reduction target by the end of 2007.'

Abbey, which is the UK's second largest mortgage lender, said net mortgage lending rose 20% to pounds 1.8bn in the third quarter compared to a year ago.
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Title Annotation:Business
Publication:Western Mail (Cardiff, Wales)
Date:Oct 27, 2006
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