BSI SA

BSI Group: half-yearly results lower than last year

    Lugano (ots) - In the first six months of 2002, the BSI Group recorded positive results, though reporting a decline as compared to the same period last year. Gross earnings were CHF 97m, 25.4% below the 2001 figure. Assets under management were CHF 43.4bn, 11.6% less than at the end of last year. New client assets increased by CHF 1.2bn, confirming that the Group continues to enjoy the trust of investors. The BSI Group will continue to grow its Private Banking operations in Europe, and especially in Italy.

    The BSI Group's net income decreased by 17% to an overall CHF 232m (2001: CHF 279m). Commission income registered a 12% reduction, amounting to CHF 160m (2001: CHF 182m). Income from trading also reacted to the unfavourable economic environment, falling by 15% to CHF 25m (2001: CHF 29m). At CHF 48m, net interest income was 21% lower than the previous year's figure.

    The BSI Group's reduced income is due to the worldwide economic slowdown together with turbulence in the international stock markets. This effect was accentuated by the general weakening of the US dollar against the Swiss franc and the euro.

    Systematic cost cutting measures had a positive effect, as operating costs were CHF 136m (2001: CHF 149m), representing a 9% reduction compared to the first half of 2001.

    Gross operating profit was CHF 97m, or 25.4% below the figure for the same period last year (CHF 130m).

    The difficult economic environment and the Italian tax amnesty caused assets managed by the BSI Group to diminish from CHF 49.1bn to CHF 43.4bn from the beginning of the year. Despite this decrease, the inflow of new client assets for management by the BSI Group totalled CHF 1.2bn. This amount did not suffice to compensate for the outflow, but it is nevertheless a sign of confidence in the strategy of the Group.

    As of 30 June the shareholder's equity of the BSI Group amounted to CHF 635m, or 83% above the required level.

    The BSI Group will continue to grow its Private Banking operations in Europe, and especially in Italy, where the opening of a branch office in Turin marks the start of BSI's expansion of the network in that country.

    BSI AG, formerly called Banca della Svizzera Italiana, was established in Lugano in 1873 and is the oldest bank in Canton Ticino. Since the beginning of 1999 it has been fully owned by the Generali Insurance Group. The bank's focus is on asset management and related services for private and institutional clients. BSI is represented in the major international financial markets and has seven branches in Switzerland.

ots Originaltext: BSI AG
Internet: www.newsaktuell.ch

Contact:
Stefano Coduri
BSI AG General Secretariat
Tel.      +41/91/809'31'67
Fax        +41/91/924'42'78
mailto: stefano.coduri@bsi.ch

BSI SA
Via Magatti 2
6901 Lugano
Tel.    +41/91/809'31'11
Fax      +41/91/809'36'78



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